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BIOGRAPHICAL DICTIONARY 



OF 



EMINENT SCOTSMEN. 



ORIGINALLY EDITED BY ROBERT CHAMBERS. 



NEW EDITION, 



REVISED THROUGHOUT AND CONTINUED 



REV. THOMAS THOMSON, 

EDITOR OF THE " COMPREHEN'SIVF- HISTORY OF ENGLA.ND," ETC. 



ILLUSTRATED BY NUMEROUS AUTHENTIC PORTRAITS OX STEEL. 



VOLUME I. 



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LONDON; 
LLACKIE AND SON. l'.\TERNOSTER ROW 

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1870. 



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PUBLISHERS' PREFACE. 



The first edition of the Biographical Dictionary of Eminent Scotsmen 
was edited by Mr. (now Dr.) Robert Chambers. It was issued in 4 vols, demy 
8vo, and completed in i8T,4.^An his preface the Editor says: — 

"A biographical dictkmary of eminent natives of Scotland has been re- 
garded as a desideratum in our national literature for the greater part of a 
century. Such a work was successively contemplated by Sir David Dal- 
rymple and Mr. William Smellie, each of whom proceeded so far with the 
design as to write a few of the articles. When the Editor of the present 
Work began a few years ago to inquire into the literary and historical 
antiquities of his country, he found the desire of possessing a dictionary of this 
kind not in the least abated, but very little hope entertained that, under the 
existing prospects of literature, it would be possible to present such a book 
to the public. He proceeded, nevertheless, perhaps rather under the influence 
of a peculiar enthusiasm than any wiser or more considerate motive, to take 
upon himself a task which at least two of his predecessors had failed to 
accomplish, and for which he could not but feel himself to be in many respects 
imperfectly qualified. Sometime after beginning his labours, a fortunate 
alliance with his present Publishers, who had projected a similar work, 
removed many of the original difficulties, and he was enabled to commence 
the publication in 1833. 

"In now taking a retrospective view of his labours, he sees, with sonic 
regret, passages which he could amend, and even one or two articles which, 
upon a more rigid estimate of merit, he would be disposed to omit. He has 
much satisfaction, however, in reflecting that very (c\v instances of error in 
point of fact have been indicated to him; so that he is enabled to hope that 
his Work, upon the whole, makes that near approach to correctness, which is 
the most valuable feature in a book of reference." 

The second edition, completed in 1855, consisted of a reprint of the four 
volumes of the first edition, tlie stereot\-pe plates o( which were rexisetl iiinkr 
the inspection of the Publishers, and of a fifth \-olume written niostl\" b>" the 



vi PUBLISHERS' PREFACE. 

Rev. Thomas Thomson. In his preface to the fifth volume Mr. Thomson 
says : — 

"A full national Biography for Scotland, from the earliest period till 1834, 
was accomplished by the Work, the publication of which was completed 
during that year, under the title of 'Lives of Illustrious and Distin- 
guished Scotsmen,' of which the first four volumes of the present is a 
re-issue. But since the period of its first publication, circumstances have 
occurred through which a large addition to the original collection was urgently 
demanded. The close of the last, and the earlier part of the present century, 
have constituted an epoch in the history of the Scottish mind, such as our 
country, prolific though it has been of eminent men, has never previously 
enjoyed. But of these illustrious Scotsmen of our own day, the greater part 
have died since the year 1834, while they were so numerous as well as 
distinguished, tiiat nothing less than an entire volume seemed necessary for 
their memorial. If in this estimate it should be alleged that a mistake has 
been made — that the worth which our own eyes have beheld, and over which 
the grave has so recently closed, has in some instances been rated higher than 
a future time and the increasing experience of society will ratify — still we 
trust it is a mistake which the succeeding generation will be easily disposed to 
pardon. 

"The author of this additional volume of the 'LiVES OF ILLUSTRIOUS 
AND Distinguished Scotsmen' has only to add, that the following memoirs 
owe nothing more to him than the care of editorial revision: viz. those of 
Joanna Baillie, Rev. Dr. Robert Balfour, James Bell, John Burns, ^Ll)., David 
Dale, Colonel John Fordyce, George Gardner, Charles IMackintosh, James 
Montgomery, and Thomas Thomson, mt)., f.r.s. These were derived from 
sources of information to which he either had no ready access, or were con- 
nected with subjects to which he thought he could not render such ample 
justice as they merited. For the authorship of the rest of the volume, what- 
ever may be its merits or defects, he claims the entire responsibility." 

When the lapse of time seemed to render a new and enlarged edition of 
this Dictionary necessary, it was resolved to reset the whole Work, so that the 
biographies in the original work and in tlie supplemental fifth volume, and the 
large number of new memoirs requiring now to be introduced, might all be 
fused into one general ali)habet. The opportunity thus presented for revising 
the entire Work was taken advantage of. Some memoirs which seemed to 
have extended to an undue lengtli were retrenched, and others that either 
seemed too curt, or respecting the subjects of whicli additional information had 
become available, were partially amplified, while, following out the more rigid 
estimate of merit hinted at in the preface of the original edition, a few others 
were altogether omitted. The editor, Mr. Thomson, entered upon the task for 
which he was so eminently qualified quite con auiorc. He revised the whole 



PUBLISHERS* PREFACE. vii 

of the lives in the five volumes of the second edition in the manner indicated, 
and wrote all the hundred and forty-seven additional memoirs by which the 
present edition is so greatly enlarged, with exception of those of John 
Crawford, William Richard Hamilton, William Jordan, Horatio M'Culloch, 
R.S.A., J. Beaumont Neilson, John Phillip, R.A., Charles Kirkpatrick Sharpc, 
James Smith of Jordanhill, Andrew Wilson, Thomas Graham, D.C.L., F.R.S., 
and probably a few others, which were contributed by relatives or intimate 
friends of the deceased persons commemorated, or written by gentlemen 
specially conversant with the departments of knowledge in which the sub- 
jects of the memoirs were eminent. Mr. Thomson had just finished his 
editorial labours by completing the memoirs for the Supplement at the end 
of the third volume, with exception of a couple of lives added since, when 
the hand of death arrested his career before the final proofs had passed 
through the press. An interesting memoir of this indefatigable literary 
labourer, contributed by his widow, has been appropriately placed in the 
Supplement. 

There being no more interesting and instructive history than the lives of the 
men by whom history is made, there has been added to the work a full Chrono- 
logical Index of the memoirs of which it is composed, by means of which the 
reader is enabled to peruse them in the sequence of their dates, and thus 
convert this Dictionary into an admirable biographical history of Scotland, of 
its kind the most complete that has hitherto been published. In addition 
there is appended an Alphabetical Index, in which is registered the principal 
authorities and sources whence the materials of the biographies were derived. 

In bringing the publication of this important Work to a conclusion, the 
Publishers feel gratified in being able to point to the entire fulfilment of the 
promises made in the prospectus. For unquestionably "Among the biogra- 
phies will be found a large number of an cxceedingl)' instructive character, 
calculated to form incentive examples to young and ardent minds, and 
numerous instances of men who have risen from humble circumstances and 
attained to high positions, and of those who have succeeded in the pursuit of 
knowledge in spite of the greatest hardships and difficulties." And all must 
confess that it forms "a comprehensive record of the achievements of those, in 
ever}- walk of life, whose memories are cherished by their countr}-nien, and 
whose deeds form the history of their country; of those who, by their encrg\-, 
wisdom, or bravery, their patience, industry, learning, or writings, ha\'c been 
influential in preserving its freedom or maintaining the rights of its people; 
who have been the leaders in the progress of national ci\ilization ; and whose 
exertions have raised their country to that proud eminence which it now 
occupies among the nations of Europe." 

Glasgow,,-//;-//, 1S70. 



A 



BIOGRAPHICAL DICTIONARY 



OF 



EMINENT SCOTSMEN. 



A. 



ABERCROMBY, Tfie Honourable Alex- 
ander (Lonl Abercromhy), a distinguished lawyer 
of the latter part of the i8th century, and an elegant 
occasional writer, was the youngest son of George 
Abercromby of Tullibody, in Clackmannanshire, 
and brother of the celebrated Sir Ralph Abercromby. 
He was born on the 15th of Octolier, 1745. While 
his elder brotliers were destined for the army, Alex- 
ander chose the profession of the law, \vhich was 
more consistent with his gentle and studious charac- 
ter. After going through the ordinary course of 
classes at the university of Edinburgh, he became, 
in 1766, a member of the Faculty of Advocates. He 
was at this early period of his life the favourite of 
all who knew liim, not only for the uncommon hand- 
si^meness of his person, but for the extrem.e sweetness 
of his disposition. Being given to the gaieties of 
fashionable life, he had little relish for laborious 
employment; so that, for some years after his admis- 
sion into the Faculty of Advocates, his splendid 
abilities were well-nigh obscured by indolence or 
frivolity. Roused at length to exertion, he engaged 
with ardour in all the duties of his profession, and 
soon became eminent for professional skill, and dis- 
tinguished as a most eloquent pleader. His reputa- 
tion and business rapidly increased, and soon raised 
him to the first rank at the Scottish bar. In May, 
1792, he was appointed one of the judges of the 
Court of Session, when, in compliance with the 
custom of the Scottish judges, he adopted tlie title of 
Lord Abercromby; anil, in December following he 
was called to a seat in the Court of Justiciary. " In 
his judicial capacity he was distinguished by a pro- 
found knowledge of law, a patient attention, a clear- 
ness of discernment, and an unbiassed impartiality, 
which excited general admiratiim." His literary 
performances and character are thus summed up by 
iiis frien<l Henry Mackenzie, who, after his death, 
undertook the task of recording his virtues and 
merits for the Royal Society: — "The lal)orious em- 
ployments of his profession did not so entirely engross 
him, as to preclude his indulging in the elegant 
amusements of polite literature. He was one of that 
society of gentlemen who, in 1779, set on foot the 
perio(iical paper, published at Edinburgh during that 
and the subsoijucnt year, under the title of the 
A/irror: and wiio afterwards gave to the world an- 
other work of a similar kind, the Louui^cr, published 
in 17S5 and 17S6. 'i"o these papers he was a verv 
valuable coiUrilmtor. being the author of n papers 
in the M/nvr and nine in the Lcun^cr, His papers 

VOL. I. 



are distinguished by an ease and gentlemanlike turn 
of expression, by a delicate and polished irony, by a 
strain of manly, honourable, and virtuous sentiment." 
Mackenzie states that they are also characterized bv 
an unaffected tenderness, which he had displayed 
even in his speeches as a barrister. After exempli- 
fying almost every virtue, and acting for some years 
in a public situation with the undivided applause of 
the world. Lord Abercromby was cut off by a pul- 
monary complaint at Falmouth, whither he had gone 
for his health, on the 17th of November, 1795. 

ABERCROMBY, John, the author of several 
esteemed works on gardening, was the son of a re- 
spectable gardener near Edinburgh, where he was 
born about the year 1726. Having been bred by 
his father to his own profession, he removed to 
London at the early age of eighteen, and became a 
workman in the gardens attached to the royal palaces. 
Here he distinguished himself so much by his taste 
in laying out grounds, that he was encouraged to 
write upon the subject. Llis first work, however, 
in order to give it greater weight, was pulilished 
under the name of a then more eminent horticulturist, 
Mr. Mawe, gardener to the Duke of Leeds, under 
the title of Ma-i^'s Gardciicri CaUmiar. It soon 
rose into notice, and still mamtains its place. The 
editor of a subsequent edition of this work says, "The 
general principles of gardening seem to be as cor- 
rectly ascertained and clearly described by this 
author, as by any that have succeeded him." And 
fiirther, "The style of Abercromby, though some\\ hat 
inelegant, and in some instances prolix, yet appears, 
upon the whole, to be fully as concise, and at least n:^ 
correct and intelligible, as that of some of the more 
modern and less original of his successors." Al)er- 
cromby afterwards jiublished, under his own name. 
the C'nnrrsdl Dktioiary of Gaydoiin^ iinJ J^ctitrr:. 
in 4to; which was followed, in succe>>ion. by tl;c 
GardLitcrs' Dictionary, the Gardiiu-ys /hi:iy .-Is.-:.'- 
ta)it, the Gardriicrs' J'adc- Micum, the Ksldia: 
Gardoicr and Ilol-bcd J-'owr. the Ih!-hcu.<c Gar- 
dciicr, and numerous other work<, mo>t ot \\lr.c:i 
attained to popularity. Alx-rcroniby. alter a u-eli;l 
and virtuous life, died at London in iSC'. agt^i 
about eiiihtv vears. 



tlie 



ABERCROMBIE. J-min. M.D.. wa^ o, 
latest of that medical" scliool (f wiiiJ; Sc-ilai.' 
is so iu>t'y i^nniii. He wa- horn in .Vi'L-r^iccr.. 1.1: 
the lull of October. I 761, and wa, ;oii uf ihe Rev 

1 



JOHN ABERCROMBIE, M.D. 



Mr. Abercrombic, who for many years was one of the 
ministers of that town, and distinguished by his 
piety and worth. The excellent training which 
John enjoyed under such a parent, imparted that 
high moral antl religious tone by which his whole 
life was subsequently characterized. After a boy- 
hood spent under the paternal roof, and the usual 
routine of a classical education, he was sent, in con- 
sequence of his choice of the medical profession, 
to the university of Kdinburgh, at that time distin- 
guished as the lx;>t medical school in tiie emjiire. 
llere he applied to his studies with indefatigable 
■ diligence, and while his fellow-students marked his 
progress with admiration, they were not less struck 
with the moral excellence of his character, and the 
deep, practical, unohtru>ive piety by which, even 
thus early, his whole life was regxilated. It was 
this confirmed excellence of character, expressed 
alike in action and conversation, combinetl with his 
high professional talents and reputation, that after- 
wards won for him the confidence of his patients, 
and imparted to his attentions at the sick-bed a charm 
that, of itself, was half the cure. When the usual 
prescril)ed course of study at the medical classes was 
tinishe<i, Mr. .\t)ercroml)ie gr.aduated at the uni- 
versity of Kdinburgh on the 4th of June, 1S03, while 
only in his twenty-second year, the subject of his 
thesis l)eing Dc Fatmiate Alpiua. He then went 
to London, and after a short period of study at the 
scho<^)ls and hospitals of the metropolis, returned to 
Edinburgh, and was admitted a fellow of the Royal 
College of Surgeons on the I2t]i of November, 1804. 
On this occasion his probationary essay, submitted 
to the jiresident and council, entitled On Paralysis 
of the I^riL'cr Kxtrcmitics from Diseased Spine, was 
characterized by such clearness of thought and per- 
spicuity of style, as fully mdicated the eminence 
tiiat awaited him not only in his professional capa- 
city, but also in the ranks of authorship. 

Thus prepared, I)r. .\bercrombie, though still 
young, and almo>t a stranger in Kdinburgh, resolved 
to estal)li>h himself at once as a physician in tlie 
northern capital, in--tead of commencing his career 
in some more humble district. He accordingly took 
a house in Nicolson ."street, and as a general or 
family practitioner his re])utation continued to grow 
from year to year without interruption. Even this, 
however, was not enough for his active and benevo- 
lent mind; and therefore, notwithstanding the in- 
crease of business, and its teni]iting emoluments, he 
gave much of his time to attendance on the poor, as 
i>nc of the medical ofTicers of the Royal Public Dis- 
jK-n^ary. Still <leeming his own ])ersonal exertions 
insufficient, he would not re>t untd he had imparted 
his enthu-.ia-.m to rithers; and therefore, wlien his 
re|)Utation in clinical knowledge had gathered round 
him a ho>t of pujiils cmulous t<i follow his example, 
he divided the city into di-^tricts, to each of which 
a few of the^e students were attached for medical 
sujK.-rinten lence. In this way, while the health of the 
liumhlcst of the population of I'.diubvirgh was cared 
f. ir, an efficient cla^s of experienced ])liysicians was 
trained f >r tiie kingdom at large. liesides this im- 
portant service, i>n l>eiiig appointed vaccinator along 
with I )r^. (lillespie and I'.ryce, he was enaliled to 
take with them an active ]iart in intro'lucmg the 
practice of the Jennerian discovery into Scotland. 

At length, when, after a course of years, the jiro- 
fc->sional exiKrrience and reputation of I)r. Aber- 
crombic had reached their height, an event occiirnd 
by which it was hoped their excellence would be 
duly honoured. This was a vacancy in the chair 
of medicine in the university of I->linburgh, through 
the death of I )r. Grcgorv in 1S21. On this occasion 



Dr. Abercrombie added his name to the list of 
candidates, while his friends were sanguine in the 
hope of his success. But town-councils are not 
always infallible judges of scientific attainments, 
and his application was unsuccessful. The follow- 
ing list of his writings, which he presented to the 
])rovost and town-council of Edinburgh, on announc- 
ing himself as candidate for the chair, will suffi- 
ciently show how his hours of literary leisure, amidst 
a throng of jjrofessional occupations extending over 
the preceding course of years, had been occupied 
and improved: — On Diseases of the Spinal Marrow. 
On Dropsy; particularly on some Modifications of 
it to/iich are successfully treated by Plood-letting. 
On Chronic Inflammation of the Brain and its 
Membranes, including Researches on Hydrocephalus. 
On Apoplexy. On Palsy. On Organic Diseases of 
the Brain. On a Remarkable and Dangerous Affec- 
tion, producing Difficulty of Breathitig in Infants. 
On the Pathology of the Intestinal Canal. Part 
I. — On Ileus. Ditto. Part II.- — On Inflam»iatio)i 
of the Bcnvels. Ditto. Part III— On Diseases of 
the Afucous Membranes of the Bozcels. On the 
Pathology of Consumptive Diseases. On Ischuria 
Penalis. 

Afterthe decease of Dr. Gregory, Dr. Abercrombie, 
although unsuccessful in liis a])plication for the chair 
of medicine, succeeded him as consulting pliysician, 
in which situation his services were often in demand, 
not only in Edinburgh, but over the whole of vScot- 
land. Pie was also appointed physician to the king 
for Scotland — a mere title, it is true, but at the same 
time one of those honorary titles which often stamp 
the value of the man, and prove a passport to the 
substantialities of eminence and wealth. In 1834, 
his reputation was so completely fixed, that the uni- 
versity of Oxford, departing from its usual routine 
in behalf of the alumni of Scottish colleges, conferred 
on him the honorary degree of Doctor of Medicine, 
and in the following year he was elected lord-rector 
of the Marischal College of Aberdeen. Besides 
these, he held other offices of distinction, most of 
which were connected with benevolent societies. In 
tliis way his life went onward, and while he increased 
in wealth and professional reputation, his ]iiety made 
him the friend of the good, and his benevolence the 
honoured of the poor. But all was brought to 
an abrupt termination by his sudden death, at his 
house in York I'lace, on the 14th of November, 
1S44. On the morning of that day, ha\ing break- 
fasted at nine o'clock, he retired to his jnivate room, 
while several patients were waiting for him, and his 
carriage standing at the d(ii)r. As nearly an hour 
elapsed, his servant, alarmed at such unusual delay, 
entered the room, and found his master l}ing ex- 
tended and lifeless on the floor, his death having 
been apparently all but instantaneous. It was found, 
on vi. post mortem examination, that llie cause of his 
tleath was the bursting of a coronary artery. Thus 
unexpectedly was closed the life of one whom all 
classes esteemed, and whose loss is still fell and re- 
membered. 

Dr. Abercrombie was distinguished not only 
as a most eminent and successful medical i)racti- 
tioner, but alsf) as an able and eloquent writer. 
.\t first his exertions in authorship were confined 
to the I'.dinhurgh Medical and .Surgical Journal, 
and other similar jirofessional ])eriodicals; but when 
his literary streni;th was matured, he jiroduced a 
separate treatise entitled Pathological and Practical 
Researches on Diseases of the Brain and the .Spinal 
Cord, Ivlinburgh, 1828, 8vo. This work, vhich 
a!)ounds in pure scientific knowledge, and evinces 
his ]irofuund research into mental character, as con- 



PATRICK ABERCROMBY 



SIR RALPH ABERCROMBY. 



nected with physical condition and action, was fol- 
lowed in the same year by another of still hij^her 
merit, having for its title Pathological and Prac- 
tical Researches on the Diseases of the Intestinal 
Canal, Lmer, and other Viscera of the Abdomen, 
Edinburgh, 1828, 8vo. These, however, though so 
highly meritorious, were but prelusive efforts to 
something still more important; and after a careful 
study and arrangement of the materials which he 
had been accumulating for years, he produced two 
works; the one entitled Inquiries concerning the 
Intellectual Po^cers, and the Investigation of 7'ruth, 
Edinburgh, 1830, 8vo: and the other, I he Philo- 
sophy of the Moral Feelings, London, 1833, ^^'O- 
Upon these works, of which the latter is a sequel to 
the former, his literary reputation will chiefly rest; 
and they will always continue to be prized by the 
reflective mind, from the views which they unfold of 
the intellectual and moral nature of man, and the 
harmonious combination which exists between the 
truths of science and the revelations of Christianity. 
Independently, however, of these writings, so dis- 
tinguished by their profound medical, ethical, and 
metaphysical knowledge, and so practical in their 
bearings. Dr. Abercrombie's pen was employed on 
the subjects of humble every-day usefulness, and 
pure unmixed religion and vital godliness; so that 
shortly after the publication of his Philosophy of 
the Moral Feelings, he produced his Treatise on 
the Aforal Condition of the Linoer Classes in Edin- 
burgh; and subsequently. The FJemenls of Sacred 
Truth, which were first published singly and at 
intervals, and afterwards collected into a small 
volume. "These tracts," an able reviewer has ob- 
served, "reflect the highest honour on Dr. Aber- 
crombie. It is beautiful to see an individual of his 
professional celebrity thus dedicating his talents and 
a portion of his time to religious instruction. Such 
an example is above all praise." 

ABERCROMBY, Patrick, historian, was the 
third son of Alexander Abercromby of Fetterneir, 
in Aberdeenshire, a branch of the house of Birken- 
bog in Banffshire, which again derived its descent 
from Abercromby of Abercromby in Fife. Francis, 
the eldest son of Abercromby of Fetterneir, was 
created Lord Glassford in 16S5; but as the patent, 
by an extraordinary restriction, was limited to his 
own life only, the title did not descend to his chil- 
dren. Patrick Abercromby was bom at Forfar in 
1656, and was educated at the university of St. 
Andrews, where he took the degree of Doctor in Medi- 
cine in 16S5. His family being eminently loyal, the 
young physician is said to liave changed his religion 
to please James VH., who consequently made him 
one of the physicians of the court. A proceeding so 
<lishonest and time-serving was speedily and severely 
punished; for, at the Revolution, Abercroml)y was 
deprived of his appointment. For some years after 
he ajipears to have lived aliroad; but he returned to 
Scotland in the reign of Queen Anne, and devoted 
himself to the study of national antiquities. In 
1707, he published a translation of M. Beauge's 
very rare book, F Histoire de la Guerre d'Fcosse, 
1556, under the title of The History of the Cam- 
pagnes 1 548 (7//</ 1549; "being an exact account of 
the NLirti-il Fxpeditions performed in those davs bv 
tiie ."^cots an<i French on the one hand, and tlie 
English and tiieir foreign auxiliaries on the other: 
ilone in French by Mons. Beauge, a French gentle- 
man; witli an introductor)' preface by the Translator." 
In the preface, the ancient alliance between Scotland 
and France is strenuously asserted. This curious 
French work, which gives a complete account of the 



war carried on by the Popish government of Cardinal 
Beatoun, aided by the French, against the English 
under Protector Somerset, was reprinted in the 
original Ijy Mr. Smythe of Methven for the Bannatyne 
Club, 1829, along with a preface, giving an account 
of Abercrondjy's translation. The great W(jrk of 
Dr. Abercromby is in two volumes, folio, entitled, 
The Martial Achiez'ements of the Scots Nation. He 
tells us in the preface, that, not venturing to write 
regular history or biography, he had resolved to re- 
late the deeds of all the great men of his country, in 
a less ambitious strain, and with a more minute at- 
tention to small facts, than is compatible with those 
styles of composition. He also, with great modesty, 
apologizes for his manner of writing by saying, 
" When my reader is told that 'twas my fate to spend 
most part of my youth in foreign countries, to have 
but viewed, en passant, the south jjart of Britain, and 
to have been conversant with Roman and French 
rather than with English authors, he will not expect 
from me those modish turns of phrase, nor that exact 
propriety of words, Scotsmen, by reason of their 
distance from the fountain of custom, so seldom 
attain to." The first volume of the Martial Achieve- 
ments wse^ published, in 1711, by Mr. Robert Free- 
bairn, and shows a respectable list of subscribers. 
About one-half of it is occupied by the early fabulous 
history of Scotland, in which the author, like almost 
all men of his time, and especially the Jacobites, 
was a devout believer. It closes with the end of the 
reign of Robert Bruce. The second volume appeared, 
with a still more numerous and respectable list of 
subscribers, in 171 5; it was partly printed by Free- 
bairn, and partly by Thomas Ruddiman, who not 
only corrected the manuscript, but superintended its 
progress through the press. This is said by Chalmers 
to have been the first tyjjographical effort of Ruddi- 
man. Abercromby's Martial Achieventoits is upon 
the whole a very creditable work for a Scottish anti- 
quary of that period; the author is not superior to 
the credulity of his age and party, but he is eminently 
industrious, and his narrative is written in an enter- 
taining style. The work shows a wide range of 
authorities, and is liberally interspersed with contro- 
versial discussions of the points most contested by 
antiquaries. Dr. Patrick Abercromby died poor in 
1 7 16, or, as other writers say, in 1726, leaving a 
widow in distressed circumstances. 

ABERCROMBY, Sir Rai.ph, a distinguished 
general, under whom the British arms met their first 
success in the French revolutionan.- war, was the 
eldest son of George Abercromby of Tullibody, in 
Clackmannanshire, a gentleman of ancient and re- 
spectable family, and of Maiy, daughter of Kaljih 
Dundas of Manor. lie was born at Menstrie, in th.e 
parish of Logic, on the 7th October, 1734. His 
education seems to have been regarded with more 
care than was usually manifesteil by the ."Scottish 
country gentlemen of the early and middle ]'arts of 
the last century. After passing through the cu^to^la^y 
course at Rugbv, he became a student, fir.-t in the 
university of lOdinburgh, and subsequently in that of 
Ciottingen. He entereil the army, as cornet in the 
3d dragoon guards. May 23. 1756, and liccan'.e a 
lieutenant, in the same regiment, in the year 17(10: 
which rank he held till AjTil, 1762, when he obtained 
a company in the 3d horse. In tliis regimeiU lie r'-e, 
in 1770, to the rank of majnr, and in 1773 to that c : 
lieutenant-colonel. He was included ;n ilic 1>". ''! 
brevet-colonels in 17S0, and in 17S1 \\.!- made 
colonel of th.e 103d. or king's Iri-h ir.i'.-ir.ry. a ikw 
regiment, whicli ^\■as broke:! at tlie ]'oai.c 1:1 '7^3' 
when Cu!>.'nel Aberv'runibv was iilaccd en ha.i-i'ay. 



SIR RALPH ABERCROMBV. 



It may be noticed in passing that he represented the 
shire of Kinross in the British parUament from 1774 
till 17S0; but made no attempt to render himself 
conspicuous, either as a party-man or as a politician. 
In September, 17S7, he was promoted to the rank 
of major-general, and next year obtained the com- 
mand of the 69th foot. From this coqis he was, in 
1792, removed to the 6th foot: from that again to 
the 5lh; and in November, 1796, to the 2d dragoons, 
or Scots Cireys. 

On the breaking out of the French revolutionary 
war, Abercromby held tlie local rank of lieutenant- 
general, and servetl with di^tinguishcd honour in the 
campaigns of 1 794 and 1795, under the Duke of 
York. He commanded the advanced-guard in the 
affair of Cateau (April 16, 1794K in which Chapuy, 
the French general, wxs taken ]'>risoner, and thirty- 
five pieces of cannon fell into the hands of the 
British. In the reverses that followed, the British 
armv escajx-d entire destruction solely by the mas- 
terly mana'uvres of Al>ercromby, who was second in 
comm.and. He was wounded at Nimeguen, in the 
montli of ( )ctoI)er following; notwithstanding which, 
the ardui>us service of conducting the retreat through 
Holland in the dreadfully severe winter of 1794, was 
devolved wholly upon him and General Dundas. 
Than this retreat nothing could be conceived more 
calamitous. The troops did all that could be ex- 
pectevl from them in their tr)ing situation. Oppressed 
by numbers, and having lost all their stores, they 
made good their retreat in the face of the foe, amidst 
the rigours of a singularly severe winter; while for 
the removal of the sick, nothing could be procured 
but open waggons, in which they were exposed to 
the intense severity of the weather, to drifting snows 
and heavy falls of sleet and rain. The mortality, of 
course, was very great. The regiments were so 
scattered, marching through tlie snow, that no returns 
could be made out, and both men and horses were 
foun'l in great numbers fro/en to death. "The 
march," says an eye-witness, " was marked by scenes 
of the most calamitous nature. We could not pro- 
cee<l a hundred yards without seeing the dead bodies 
of men, wtjmen, children, and horses, in every di- 
rection. One scene," adds the writer, "made an 
impressirjn on my mind which time will never be able 
to efface. Near a cart, a little further in the com- 
tnon, we perceived a stout-lo<iking man ami a beauti- 
ful young woman, with an infant about seven months 
oil at the breast, all three frozen dead. The mother 
had m')st certainly died in the act of suckling her 
child, a>, with one breast exposed, she lay upon the 
drifted -now, the milk, to all aii]jearancc, in a stream 
drawn from t!ie nipple by the babe, and instantly 
congealed. The infant secme<i as if its li]is had just 
then bjcn disengaged, and it rcposecl its little head 
upon the mother's ho-oni, with an ovcrllow <jf milk 
frozen as it trickled down from its mouth, 'iheir 
countenances were jK-rfectly coiri])osed and fresh, as 
if they had only been in a sound and tranijuil shun- 
l)er. " The liritish army reached 1 )evcnter after in- 
credible exertion, on the 27th of January, 1795; but 
they were not ab!_' to maintain the position, being 
closely jiur-ued by a well-aii])oiiited army, u])wards 
of 50,000 stning. They continued their ]>rogress, 
alternately fighting and retreating, till the eml 
of March, when tlie main bodv, now reduced one- 
half, reach'-d Itremen, where they were embarked 
f,r F.ngland. 

While the French were making tho<;e gigantic 
cfTorts at home which confoun'led all previous cal- 
culations in I'.urfvpean warfare, their struggles .-ibro.id 
were equally startling. They repossessed themselves 
in the West Indies of (iuadeloupe and St. I.ucia, 



established a landing upon several points in the 
island of Martinique, and made partial descents on 
the islands of St. Vincent, Grenada, and Marie 
Galante. In these various incursions they plundered, 
in the several islands, property to the amount of one 
thousand eight hundred millions of livres (about 
;^72,ooo,cxx)). To put an end to these ruinous 
depredations, a fleet was fitted out in the autumn of 
the year 1 795, for the purpose of conveying a military 
force to the West Indies; and the charge of the land 
troops was given to Sir Ralph Abercromby, with 
the appointment of commander-in-chief. He took 
the command, and hastened the embarkation; and 
although the equinox overtook them, so that several 
of the transports were lost in the Channel, the fleet 
made the best of its way to the W'est Indies, and by 
the month of March, 1796, the troops were landed 
and in active operation. St. Lucia was speedily 
captured by a detachment of the army under Sir 
John Moore, as were St. Vincent and Grenada by 
another under General Knox. The Dutch colonies, 
Demerara, Essequibo, and Berbice, on the coast of 
Guiana, likewise fell into the hands of the British 
about the same time, almost without stroke of 
sword. The remainder of 1796 having been thus 
employed, Sir Ralph made preparations for attack- 
ing, early in 1797, the Spanish island of Trinidad. 
For this purpose, the fleet sailed with all the trans- 
ports, from the island of Curacao on the morning 
of the 15th February, 1797, and next day passed 
through the Barns into the Gulf of Bria, Avhere they 
found the Spanish admiral, with four sail of the line 
and one frigate, at anchor, under cover of the island 
of Gasj^agrande, which was strongly fortified. The 
British squadron immediately anchored opposite, and 
almost within gunshot of the Spanish ships. The 
frigates, with the transports, were sent to anchor 
higher up the bay, at the distance of about five miles 
from the town of Port d'Espagne. Dispositions were 
immediately made for attacking the town and the 
ships of war next morning by break of day. By 
two o'clock of the morning, however, the Spanish 
stjuadron was observed to be on fire. The ships 
burned verj' fast, one only escaping the conflagration, 
which was taken possession oi by the British. The 
Spaniards, when they set their sliips of war on fire, 
had also evacuated the island. The troops under 
Sir Ralph Abercromby were of course landed 
without opjiosition, and the whole colony fell into 
the hands of the P)ritish. Sir Ralph next made an 
attack upon Porto Rico, in which he was unsuccess- 
ful; and shortly after he returned to Britain, and was 
received with every mark of respect. lie had, in 
his absence, been comiiliniented with the colonelcy 
of the second dragoons or Scots Greys, and nominated 
governor of the Isle of Wight. He was now (1797) 
advanced to the dignity of the Bath, raised to the 
rank of a lieutenant-general, and invested with the 
lucrative governments of Fort Cleorge and Fort 
Augustus. 

The distuib.'d state of Ireland at this time calling 
for the utnio-l vigilance, Sir Raljih .Mieicmniby 
was a])])<iinte 1 to the command of the forces in that 
unhap))y country, where he exerted himself most 
strenuously, tliough with ]>artial success, t<j su]i])ress 
rebellion and preserve order. He was ]iarticularly 
anxious, by the strictest disci])line, to restore the 
reputation of the army; for, according to his own 
emphatic declaiation, it had become more formidable 
to its frien<K than to its enemies. ])uriiig this com- 
mand he did not require to direct any military 
o]ierations in jierson; and the Marquis Cornwallis 
having received the double ap])ointnient of lord- 
lieutenant and commander-in-chief of the foixes, Sir 



SIR RALPH ABERCROMBY. 



Ralph transferred liis head-quarters to Edinburgh, 
and, on 31st of May, assumed the command of the 
forces in Scotland, to which he had Ixsen appointed. 
In the year 1799, an expedition having been 
planned for Holland to restore the Prince of Orange 
to the stadtholdership. Sir Ralph was again selected 
to take the chief command. The troops destined 
for this service sailed on the 13th of August, under 
convoy of the fleet commanded by Vice-admiral 
Mitchell, and, after encountering heavy gales, came 
to anchor o(T the Texel, on the 22d of the month. 
On the 27th the troops were disembarked to the 
south-west of the Helder point, without opposition. 
.Scarcely had they begim to move, however, when 
they were attacked by General Daendels, and a 
warm but irregular action was kept up from five 
o'clock in the morning till five in the afternoon, 
after which the enemy retired, leaving the British in 
possession of a ridge of sand-hills stretching along 
the coast from south to north. In this day's evolu- 
tions the enemy lost upwards of looo men, and 
the British about half that number. Encouraged 
by this success, Sir Ralph Abercromby determined 
to seize upon the Helder next morning, when he 
would be in possession of a seaport, an arsenal, and 
a fleet. The brigades of Generals Moore and Burrard 
were ordered to be in readiness to make the attack 
early in the morning; but the garrison was withdrawn 
through the night, leaving a considerable train of 
artillery, a naval magazine, thirteen ships of war, 
and three Indiamen, which fell into the hands of the 
British without opposition. Admiral Mitchell im- 
merliately stood down into the Texel, and offered 
battle to the Dutch fleet lying there; the whole 
of which, consisting of twelve sail of the line, 
surrendered to the British admiral, the sailors refus- 
ing to fight, and compelling their officers to give up 
tlie ships for the service of the Prince of Orange. 
Taking the surrender of the fleet as the criterion of 
Dutch feeling, the most extravagant hopes of the 
success of the expedition were entertained by the 
jieople of England ; but the sentiments of the 
Hollanders, generally, were not as yet in unison 
with those of the sailors, and every precaution was 
taken for defence. The British army, in the mean- 
time, left the sand-hills and took up a new position, 
tiieir right extending to Petten, on the German 
Ocean, and tlieir left to Oude Sluys on the Zuyder 
Zee. A fertile country was thus laid open to the 
invaders; while the canal of Zuyper, immediately in 
front, contributed to strengthen their position, enabl- 
ing them to remain on the defensive until the arrival 
of additional forces. At daybreak of I ith -Sejitember, 
the combined Dutch and French army attacked the 
centre and right of the British lines, from St. Martins 
to Petten, with a force of 10,000 men, which ad- 
vanced in three columns; the right, composed of 
Diitcli troops commanded by General Daendels, 
against St. Martins; the centre, under De Monceau, 
upon Zuyjier Sluys; and the left, composed entirely 
of Frencli troops under General Bnine, upon 
Petten. The attack, particularly on the left and 
centre, was made with the most daring intrepidity, 
but was rcinilsed l)y the British, anil the enemy 
lost upwards (if looo men. On this occasion. 
General Sir Juhu Moore was ojiposed to General 
Bnme, and distinguished himself by the most masterlv 
manoeuvres; and, had tlie British been snfficientlv 
numerous to follow up tiieir advant.ige. the United 
Provinces might have shaken otT the French voke 
even at this early period. The want of numbers 
was felt too late; but, to remedy the evil, the 
Russian troops engaged for the expediti(Mi were 
hastily embarked at the [lorts of Cronstadt and 



Revel, to the number of I7,cxx), under the command 
of General D'Hermann, and were speedily upon the 
scene of action. The Duke of York now arrived as 
commander-in-chief; and his army, with the Russians 
and some battalions of Dutch trooj)s, formed of 
deserters from the Batavian army and volunteers from 
the Dutch ships, amounted to upwards of 36,000 
men, a force considerably superior to that under 
Generals Daendels and Brune. In consequence of 
this, the Duke of York, in concert with D'Hermann, 
made an immediate attack upon the enemy's position, 
which was on the heights of Camperdown, and along 
the high sand-hills extending from the sea, in front of 
Petten, to the town of Bergen-op-zoom. The enemy's 
deficiency of numbers was far more than counter- 
balanced by the advantages of their position; im- 
proved, as it was, by strong entrenchments at the 
intermediate villages, and by the nature of the ground, 
intersected by wet ditches and canals, whose Ijridges 
had been removed, and the roads rendered impass- 
able, either by being broken up, or by means of 
felled trees stuck in the earth, and placed horizontally, 
so as to present an almost impenetrable barrier. 
The attack, however, notwithstanding all disadvan- 
tages, was made with the most determined resolution, 
early on the morning of the 19th of September, and 
was successful at all points. By eight o'clock in the 
morning, the Russians, under D'Hermann, had made 
themselves masters of Bergen-op-zoom; but they no 
sooner found the place evacuated, than they flew 
upon the spoil, and began to plunder the citizens 
whom they had professedly come to relieve. The 
vigilant enemy seized the opportunity to rally his 
broken battalions, and, being reinforced from the 
garrison at Alkmaar, attacked the dispersed Russians 
with so much impetuosity, that the latter were driven 
from Bergen-op-zoom to Schorel, with the loss of 
Generals D'Hennann and Tcherchekoff, wounded 
and taken prisoners. This failure of the Russians 
compelled the other three columns of the British 
army to abandon the positions they had already 
stormed, and return to the station they had left 
in the morning. For this disappointment 3000 
prisoners taken in the engagement was but a poor 
recompense; while the impression made upon the 
minds of the Dutch by the conduct of the Russians 
was incalculaljiv injurious to the objects of the 
expedition. The conflict was renewed on the 2d 
of October, by another attack on the whole line 
of the enemy, the troops advancing, as before, in 
four columns, under Generals Abercromby, D'Esson, 
Dundas, and Pulteney. The centre ascended the 
sand-hills at Campe, and carried the heights of 
-Schorel; and, after a vigorous contest, the Russians 
and British obtained possession of the whole range 
of sand-hills in the neighbourhood of Bergcn-o;i- 
zoom; but the severest conflict, and that %\hie!i 
decided the fate of the day, was sustained l>y tl;e 
first column under Sir Ralph .\bercroniby. He liad 
marched without opposition to within a mile of 
Egmont-op-zee, where a large body of cavalry and 
infantr}- waited to receive him. Here Sir John 
.Moore led his brig.ide to the charge in person; he 
was met by a counter-charge of the enemy, and ihc 
conflict was maintained til! evening \\ ith unexani] led 
fury. The Marquis of Huntly. wlio, with his regiment 
(the ninety-second), was (.■minesitly (listing;;isb.t'!, 
received a wound bv a nnisket-ball in the slinui'ier; 
and General Sir John Moore, after receivii'.g t\\o 
severe wounds, Mas reluctantly carried ott ti.e tie!'!. 
Sir Ralj-ih .\l>ercroml)y had two horses s!;..; v.r.^ier 
him, but he continue'! to animate tlie tn.-]- !.y Ir.s 
exam]Vie, and tlie iiTi-t i!esrer:i;e cii"r;< >■': tl-e 
enemy wcvc uiia\ ailing. Tlieir I'j-s in t;;;s u^.ys 



SIR RALPH ABERCROMBY. 



engagement was upwards of 4000 men. During 
the night they abandoned their posts on the Lange 
Dyke and at Bergen-op-zooni, and next day tlie 
British took up the positions that had been occupied 
by the French at Alkmaar and Egmont-op-zee. 
Brune having taken up a strong position between 
Beverwyck and tlie Zuyder Zee, it was determined to 
dislotlge him before the arrival of his daily-exj)ected 
reinforcements. In the first movements made for 
this purpose the British met with little opposition; 
but the Russians uiuler General D'Ksson, attempt- 
ing to gain a height near Buccum, were suddenly 
charged by an overwhelming b.xly of the enemy. 
Sir Ralph .VlKTcromby, observing the critical situa- 
tion of the Russians, hasteneil with his column to 
support them. The enemy also sent up fresh forces, 
and the action, undesignedly by either party, became 
general along the whole line, from I.emmen to the 
se.a, anil was contested on both sides with the most 
determined obstinacy, .\bout two o'clock in tlie 
afternoon, the right and centre of the .\nglo- Russian 
army iK'gan to lose grounil, ami retire upon Egmont; 
where, with the co-operation of the brigade under 
Major-general Coote, they succeeded in keeping the 
enemy in check during the remainder of the day. 
Evenmg closed over the combatants, darkened by 
deluges of rain; yet the work of mutual destruction 
knew no intermission. The fire of musketiy, wliich 
ran in undulating lines along the hills, with the 
thunder-flash of the artillery, and the fiery train of 
the death-charged shell, lighted up with momentary 
and fuful blaze the whole horizon. About ten 
o'clock at night, woni out by such a lengthened 
period of exertion, though tlicir mutual hostility 
was not in the least abated, the contending parties 
ccascil fighting, and the British were left in posses- 
sion of the ground upon which they had fought, 
with upwards of 2000 of tiicir companions lying 
dead .nround them. General Brune was, in the 
course of the night or next morning, reinforced 
by an ad 1 tion of 6ooo men, and the ground he 
occup td was by nature and art rendered nearly 
impregnab'e. The British Lay through the night 
expo-cd t > the weather, which was terrible, on the 
naked -an i-hills; their clothing drenched, and their 
arms and ammunition rendered useless by the rain. 
Nor was th'j inho>pitality of the people' less than 
that of the dements; the greater part being violently 
ho>>tiie, and the remainder sunk in supine indifference. 
Retreat was tlieref )ro a measure of necessity, and 
next night, the 7th of October, about ten o'clock, 
ami<Kt a deluge of rain, the troo]is marched back to 
their fmner station at I'etten an<l .Mknmar, which 
they reached without immediate pursuit or any 
seri'iu-. lo>s. T.i embark, however, upon sucli a 
shore, and in the face of such an enemv, without 
great h-.. was inip.s^jble; an<l, to ])revent the 
unncce--ary efl'ii^i..n -.f hlool, .in armistice was ])ro- 
ivjsed by the Duke of \'ork, till the troop, should 
be quietly embarked. T!ie I'rench general wa-, 
willing to accede to the ])roi>nsal, provided the 
Dutch fleet were restore i. anil'all forts, dyke-,, \c. 
cSl-c, left as they h.ad been taken; or, if any im- 
provements h.ad lieen made ujion them, in their 
impr..ved state. To the lir-t j.art of the iir-ipo^al 
the duke utterly refiised fir a moment \n listen; and, 
>)eing in po^e^^ion of the principal dvke-, he 
threatened to break them down an<l inundate the 
country. The fleet wa- not given uji; but in lieu 
thereof, .Sooo French and Hutch prisoners, that had 
l)ecn taken previous to this campaign, were to l)e 
restored, with all that had been taken in it. the 
Dutch seamen cxccj>ted. The trooi)s were inst.inily 
embarked, and safely handed in England, with the 



exception of the Russians, who were landed in the 
islands of Guernsey and Jersey. Though this ex- 
pedition totally failed in its main object — the libera- 
tion of Holland — it was not without advantage. 
The capture of the Dutch fleet, in the then state of 
affairs, was of very considerable importance. Nor 
was the impression it left upon the enemy of the 
superior skill of British officers, particularly of the 
sul)ject of this memoir, and the daring valour of 
British troops, without its use in the succeeding 
periods of the war. 

.Sir Ralph Abercromby, now a universal favourite, 
and esteemed the most skilful officer in the British 
service, was appointed in the month of June, 1800, 
to command the troops sent out upon a secret ex- 
pedition to the Mediterranean, and which were for 
the time quartered on the island of Minorca, where 
he arrived on the 22d of June. The very next day 
the troops were embarked for Leghorn, where they 
arrived on the 9th of July; but in consequence of an 
armistice between the French and the Austrians, 
they were not allowed to land. Part of them now 
proceeded to MaUa, and the remainder sailed back 
to Minorca. Sir Ralph himself returned to that island 
on the 26th of July, and on the 3d of .September the 
troops were again embarked, and on the 14th the 
fleet came to anchor off Europa Point in the Bay of 
Gibraltar. On the 20th the armament sailed for the 
Bay of Tetuan to procure water, and on the 23d 
returned to Gibraltar. In a few days the fleet was 
again ordered to rendezvous in the Bay of Tetuan; 
and, on the 30th of October, the whole, consisting of 
u])wards of two hundred sail, came to anchor off 
Cadiz, and preparations were made for landing the 
troops without delay. On the 6th the troops got 
into the boats, and everything was ready for the 
disembarkation. In consequence of a flag of truce 
from the shore, the landing was delayed, and in the 
afternoon the troops returned to their respective 
ships. The negotiations between the commanders 
having failed, the order was renewed for disembark- 
ing the troops next day. This order was again 
countermanded about midnight; the morning became 
stormy, and at break of day the signal was made for 
the fleet to weigh, and by the afternoon the whole 
fleet was again under sail. Part of the forces were 
now ordered for Portugal under the command of 
General Sir James Pulteney, and the remainder for 
Malta, where they arrived about the middle of 
November. Than this sailing backwards and for- 
wards, nothing was ever exhibited more strongly 
indicative of extreme folly and absolute imbecility in 
the national councils. 

It was now resolved by the liritish government 
to drive the I'Vench out of J{gy]")t, and the armament 
which had uselessly rolled about the -Mediterranean 
for so many months, was a]ipointed for that purpose. 
.Sir Ralph Abercromby, accordingly, embarked at 
Malta on the 20th of December for the B.ay of 
Marmorice, on the coast of Caramania; where cavalry 
horses were to be procured, and stores collected for 
the expedition, which, it was calculated, would sail 
for .'Mexandria by the 1st of January, 1801. Many 
things, however, occurred to retard their jirepara- 
tions. Among others of a like nature, three hundred 
horses, jnirchased by order of Lord I'dgin, the British 
ambassador at Constantinople, were found, when 
tiiey arrived at Marmorice, so small and s(^ galled 
in tiieir backs, as to be of no use, so that it was 
found necessary to shoot some, and to sell others at 
the low jiricc of a dollar a-])iece. It was believed 
that Lord Elgin had paid for a very different descrip- 
tion of horses, but the ])ersons to whose care they 
iiatl Ik'cu c(jnfided had found their account in chaiu:- 



SIR RALPH ABERCROMBY. 



ing them by the way. Good horses were procured 
by parties sent into the country for that purpose; 
but the sailing of the expedition was in consequence 
delayed till the end of February, instead of the first 
of January, as had been originally intended; and 
from the state of the weather, and other casualties, 
the landing could not be attempted liefore the 8th 
of March, on which day it was accomplished in 
Aboukir Hay, in a manner that reflected the highest 
honour on the British troops. During this delay 
Bonaparte had found means to reinforce his army in 
Egypt, and furnish it with all necessary stores; and 
the weather preventing the immediate disembarka- 
tion of the troops, enabled the French to make 
every preparation to receive them. The sand-hills 
which form the coast they had lined with numerous 
bodies of infantry, and every height was bristling 
with artillery. A most tremendous discharge of 
grapeshot and shells from the batteries, and of 
musketry from the infantry that lined the shore, 
seemed for a moment to stay the progress of the 
boats as they approached. But it was only for a 
moment. The rowers swept through the iron 
tempest to the beach; the troops leaped on shore, 
formed as they advanced, and rushing up the 
slippery declivity without firing a shot, drove the 
enemy from their position at the point of the bayonet. 
Successive bodies, as they were disembarked, pro- 
ceeded to the help of their precursors; in spite of 
every obstruction, the whole army was landed before 
night; and Sir Ralph Abercromby, advancing three 
miles into the country, took up a position with his 
right resting upon Lake Madyeh or Aboukir, and his 
left stretching to the Mediterranean. On the 1 2th 
he moved forsvard to attack the French, who were 
most advantageously posted on a ridge of sand-hills, 
their right towards the sea, and their left resting 
ujjon the canal of Alexandria. On the morning of 
the 13th, the army marched in two lines by the left, 
to turn the right tiank of the enemy. Aware of this, 
the Frencii, with their whole cavalry, and a con- 
siderable body of infantr)-, poured down from the 
heights and attacked the heads of both lines, but 
were repulsed by the advanced-guard, consisting of 
the 90th and 92d regiments, with incomparable 
gallantry. Tlie first line then formed into two, and 
advanced, while the second line turned the right of 
the French army, and drove it from its position. 
The enemy, however, made a regular retreat, and 
contested every inch of ground till they had reached 
the heights of Nicopolis, which form the principal 
defence of Alexandria. Anxious to carry these 
heights, .Sir Ralph .\bercroml)y unfortunately ordered 
forward the reserve under Sir John Moore, and the 
second line under General Ilutcheson, to attack (the 
latter the right, and the former the left) both flanks 
at once. Advancing into the open plain, they were 
exposed to the whole range of the enemy's shot, 
which they had it not in their power to return; and, 
after all, the jiosition was f<nind to be commanded 
by the guns of the forts of Alexandria, so that it 
could nut have been kept though tliey had stormed 
it. They were accordingly withdrawn, but with a 
most seriiHH loss of men; and the British army took 
up the ground from which the enemy had' been 
driven, occupying a position with its right to the 
sea and its loft to the canal of .Vlexandria; a situa- 
tion of great advantage, as it cut off all communica- 
tion with Alexandria, cxcc]n by the wav of the 
desert. In this action. Sir Ralph was nearlv 
envelo]3cd in the charge of the French cavalrv, and 
was only saved by tlie intrepidity of the 90th 
regiment. The garrisun of Aboukir surrendered on 
the iSth; but to cuuiUcrbalance this advantage, 



the French commander-in-chief, Mcnou, arrived at 
Alexandria from Cairo on the 20th, with a rein- 
forcement of 9CXX) men. Expecting to take the 
British by surprise, Menou, next morning, March 
the 2 1 St, between three and four o'clock, attacked 
their position with his whole force, amounting to from 
1 1,000 to 12,000 men. The action was commenced 
by a false attack on the left, their main strength 
being directed against the right, upon which they 
advanced in great force and with a prodigi<jus noise, 
shouting, "Vive la France! Vive la Re])ubli'iue 1" 
They were received, however, with perfect coolness 
by the British troops, who not only checked the 
impetuosity of the infantry, but repulsed several 
charges of cavalry. Greater courage was perhaps 
never exhibited than on this occasion: the different 
corps of both nations rivalled each other in the most 
determined bravery, and presented the extraordinary 
spectacle of an engagement in front, flanks, and rear, 
at the same time; so much were the contending 
parties intermingled. Nine hundred of Bonaparte's 
best soldiers, and from their tried valour denominated 
Invincibles, succeeded in turning the right of the 
British, between the walls of a large ruin and a 
battery. Three times did they storm the battery, 
and three times were the successive jiarlies ex- 
terminated. Getting at last into the rear of the 
reserve, the 42d and the 28th regiments charged 
them with the bayonet, and drove them step by 
step into the inclosure of the ruin; where, between 
600 and 700 of them being already stretched life- 
less on the ground, the remainder called out for 
quarter, and were made prisoners. Not one of them 
returned. Equally determined was their attack on 
the centre, and it was there repelled with equal 
success. A heavy column having broken through 
the line, the cavalry accompanying it wheeled to 
their left and charged the rear of the reserse; but 
this charge was broken by the accidental state of 
the ground, which had been excavated into pit- 
holes about three feet deep, for the men to sleep in 
before the arrival of their camp equipage. Over 
these holes they had to make their charge, and in 
consequence were completely routed, more than 300 
of them being left dead on the spot. P'inding all 
his movements frustrated, Menou at length ordered 
a retreat, which he was able to effect in good 
order; the British having too few cavalry to pursue. 
His loss was supposed to be between 3000 and 
4000 men, including many officers, among whom 
were General Raize, commander of the cavaln.-, who 
fell in the field, and two generals who died of their 
wounds. The loss of the l>ritish was also heavy, 
upwards of seventy officers being killed, woundc<l, 
and missing. Among these was the lamented com- 
mander-in-chief. Having hastened, on the hi.--t 
alarm, towards the cannonading. Sir Ralph nni>t 
have ridden straight among the enemy, who had 
already broken the front line and got into its rear. 
It was not yet day, and being unable to distinguish 
friend from foe, he must have been enii)arra»cd 
among the assailants, but he was extricated by tlie 
valour of his troops. To the fir>t -oldicr that (.air.e 
up to him. he said, "Soldier, if you know nie. il.'i: t 
name me." A French dragoon, at the nioincnt. con- 
jecturing the prize he had l(3>t, r(^iie uji to Mr K-il; n. 
and matie a cut at him, but not being ni-ar eiv r.j^h, 
only cut through the clotho, ami gra/cl tlu- ^'ts■.n 
with the point of his sabre. The dragocn's ]i"r>e 
wheeling about, brought him again to -iic >.!i.-;rgc, 
and he made a second attempt by a !oii:'.^-c. but the 
sabre passed bet\\-een Sir Ralph',- >i'!c r.ui h;- ngh.t 
arm. The dragoon l)e;iig at the ii;-;."i!.t .-!^ t dLao, 
the sabre remained with the geiier.;!. .\:>':'Ut the 



3 



SIR RALPH ABERCROMBY 



EARL OF ABERDEEN. 



same time it was discoveretl that he had been 
wounded in the thigh, and was entreated to have 
the wound examinetl; but he treatetl it as a trifle, 
and would not for a moment leave the field. No 
sooner, however, had the enemy begun to retreat, 
and the excitement of feeling under which he had 
been acting to subside, than he faintetl from pain and 
the loss of blootl. His wound was now examined, 
and a large incision made in order to extract the 
ball, but It could not be found. He was then put 
upon a litter, and carried aboard the Foudroviint, 
where he langui.shed till the aSth, when he dieil. 
His botly was interred in the burial-ground of the 
commandery of the grand-master, untier the walls 
of the castle of St. Elan, near the town of Valetta 
in Malta. 

Of the character of Sir Ralph Abercromby there 
can be but one opinion. Bred to arms almost from 
his infancy, he appeared to be formed for command. 
His dispositions were always masterly, and his 
success certain. He had served in .\merica, in the 
West Indies, in Ireland, in the Netherlands, in 
Holland, and in Egypt; and had in all of these 
countries gainetl great distinction. In the two 
latter countries, esjiecially, he jierformed services 
that were of incalculable advantage to his country. 
The battle of the 2 1st of March, or of Alexandria, 
while it decided the fate of Egypt, left an impression 
of Briti>h skill an<l of Britisli valour upon the minds 
of lx)th her friends and her enemies, that materially 
contributed to the splendid results of a contest longer 
in continuance, and involving interests of greater 
magnitude, than Britain had ever before been en- 
gage<l in. The manner in which he repressed the 
licentiousness of the troops in Ireland was at once 
magnanimous and elTective; and he ended a life of 
dignifie<l exertion by a death worthy of a hero. 
"\Vc have su,--tained an irreparal.)le loss," says his 
successor, "in the ]>erson of our never enough to 
be lamented commander-in-chief, Sir Ralph Aber- 
cromby; but it is some consolation to those who 
tenderly loved him, that, as his life was honourable, 
so was his death glorious. His memory will be 
rccorde<l in the annals of his country', will be sacred 
to every l'.riti>h sol'lier, and embalmed in the recol- 
lection of a grateful posterity." ' 

.Sir Ralph .Miercromhy was married to Mary 
.\nne, d.iughter of John .NIenzies of Fernton, Perth- 
shire; by whom he had issue four sons and three 
daughter^, who survived him. On the official 
account reaching England of the fate of her lamented 
husband, his wid'iw was elevated to the ])eerage, 
-May 2Slh. iSoi, as Baroness .Xhercromby of .Vbou'kir 
and Tullib'Kiy, with remainder to the heirs-male of 
the <lece.ascd general; and, on the recommendation 
of his in.ijesty, the House of Commons, without one 
dissentient voice, granted an annuity of two thousand 
jHDumis to I„ady .Ahercronihy, and tlie next two 
succeeding male heirs of the l,o<ly of Sir Raljili 
AI>ercromi)y, to whom the title of Baron .•\i)ercronil)v 
.should de-cend. The House of Conim'>ns, farther, 
sensible of the great merits of this distinguished 
British commander, voted a monument to his 

' The f.ll'.wlns p.incKvnc ii;>^in Sir Kali.li in :in'.t)icr 
ch.iractcr was wnttcn lx;f.iri; liis (Ic.th; " .As a u.uniry K-Mitlo 
man, ever attentive to all within llie (iflcof hu in.veiniMii, 
he >iland< high in the C'.tunati'in I'f his neichlciurs mv\ <l(.p<,n- 
dants; an'l when his mihlary gl'iry shall have fallen into 
oblivion, It will !<; gratefully reinenil«r'-'l that he was t!ie 
frien'l of the 'lestitutc jvK.r. the jiatrm nf useful kn.wle'li;-, 
anri the promoter of cdiiration ainnig the meanest if liis 
cottagers: as an instance it may 1)C nientioncil. that in the 
vilhgc of Tullil)fi<!y, on his paternal estate, a reading scho.il, 
iini'er his immediate insp»;<-tion. was established many years 
\i:i'-V." --Cam/>l>fli'l ynurnry through .ScctlatiJ, ^to, li-jz, 



memor)', at the public expense, which was subse- 
quently erected in St. Paul's Cathedral. 

ABERDEEN, George Hamilton Gordon, 
Fourth Earl of. This distinguished Conservative 
statesman was the eldest son of George, Lord Haddo, 
eldest son of the third ICarl of Aberdeen, and was 
born in Edinburgh on the 28th of January, 1784. 
He was not only bom but educated in Toryism; and 
on being sent at the early age of ten to England, his 
chief guardians and directors were William Pitt and 
Lord Klelville. While he was thus trained to politi- 
cal life, its particular bias in politics was also deter- 
mined; and the Tory boy was father of the future 
legislator and statesman. His classical education 
was conducted first at the school of Harrow, and 
after\vards at St. John's College, Cambridge. His 
father. Lord Haddo, having previously deceased, the 
subject of our memoir, on the death of his grand- 
father at the commencement of the present century, 
became Earl of Aberdeen. As the short-lived peace 
of Amiens opened Europe to liritish tourists, the 
young earl availed himself of the opportunity by 
visiting France, and other parts of the continent, 
and collecting that practical knowledge of men 
and things which was afterw-ards available in his 
future career; he also visited Greece, the adopted 
country of the scholar and man of taste, and returned 
to England through Turkey and Russia. This visit 
to Greece, the oppressed and fallen, where every- 
thing was in such contrast to its old heroic monu- 
ments and remembrances, and the classical taste and 
knowledge which he brought to such a study, awoke, 
as was natural, the young earl's highest enthusiasm; 
and on returning home, one of his first acts was to 
establish the "Athenian Society," an essential rule 
of which was that every member should have visited 
Greece. He also contributed to the Edinburgh J\e- 
view an elaborate article on the Topography of 
Troy; and wrote an introduction to Wilkins' transla- 
tion of Vitruvius, in which he illustrated the beauties 
of the ancient Grecian architecture. But such 
ardour, however commendable in itself, was turned 
by his opponents into ridicule, the full brunt of which 
was brought to bear against him by Lord Byron him- 
self, the most enthusiastic of Philhellenists; vho, in 
his English Baj-ds and Scotch Reviewers, dubl)ed 
him as "that travelled thane, Athenian Aber- 
deen." But something deeper than mere jiolitical 
picjue may have embittered the sarcasm of Lord 
Byron. The estate of Gicht, which should have de- 
scended to his mother, had been sold by her improvi- 
dent father to Lord Haddo, and the poetical jieer 
may have felt indignant that the carl, however inno- 
cently, had supi^lanted him in the family possession. 

In 1804 the iCarl of Aberdeen took the degree of 
M..'\. at the university, and in 1806, when he had 
arrived at the age of twenty-two, he commenced his 
imhlic life by being elected a representative ])ccr of 
.Scotland. The condition, however, of jniljlic affairs 
was such as might well daunt a young as](irant for 
])olitical jilace and responsibility. The peace of 
.Amiens had been quickly tenninated, and the war 
resumed more violently than ever. The victory of 
Trafalgar, indeed, had secured our sujiremacy by 
sea; but this was more than counterbalanced by the 
successes of Na])oleon on land, which already had 
made him the arbiter of the fate of luiro]ic. Welling- 
ton had not as yet a]ipeared upon the scene; and our 
military exi>cditions, unwisely planned, had generally 
ended in disaster and defeat. In such a state of 
affairs, when the wisdom of the oldest and most ex- 
lierienced of our politicians was at fault, the conduct 
of the youthful senator was characterized bv modest 



EARL OF ABERDEEN. 



discretion; and although he steadily supported his 
party, his voice was seldom heard in the arena of dis- 
cussion and debate. It was not indeed as a political 
orator that he was to win his way to influence and 
distinction, and this general silence distinguished the 
whole of the earl's public career to the end. Hut his 
talents were not the less felt; so that after the reverses 
of Napoleon in Russia, he was selected for a task of 
peculiar difficulty and delicacy: this was to detach 
the Emperor of Austria from the interests of Bona- 
parte, although his son-in-law, and induce him to 
unite with the allied sovereigns for his overthrow. 
That the Earl of Aberdeen should have been chosen 
fur such a mission — on the success of which the fate 
of Europe depended — shows the estimation in which 
he was held, although as yet he was scarcely thirty 
years old. The result of his negotiations justified 
the choice of our statesmen; and his proceedings at 
the court of Vienna, as British ambassador, form an 
important portion of the history of the period. But 
instead of a full detail, we can only give a passing 
notice of their effects. Austria was, in the first in- 
stance, persuaded to become neutral; she next ven- 
tured to mediate between the contending parties; 
afterwards, to perform the part of mediator with 
effect, she found it necessary to suspend the alliance 
subsisting between her and France; and finally, in 
1 8 13, she joined the coalition against Napoleon. 
The reverses of the French arms in the Peninsula, 
the indecisive victories of Bonaparte at Liitzen and 
Bautzen, the promise of a large subsidy from the 
British government to aid .Vustria in the straggle, and 
the prospect of reconstructing her broken dominion 
upon the downfal of the conqueror of Europe, were 
inducements too alluring to be disregarded; and the 
Emperor of Austria became the hostile opponent of 
a son-in-law whose day of prosperity was evidently 
drawing to a close. 

In those subsequent victories by which the armies 
of Bonaparte were overthrown, the Earl of Aberdeen, 
from his attendance on the Emperor of Austria, saw 
a large amount of the horrors of war in their worst 
forms — an experience which may either have created 
or confirmed that love of peace and non-intervention 
by which his administration was afterwards char- 
acterized, and for which he was so heavily blamed. 
He witnessed the fights of Liitzen and Bautzen; 
after the battle of Dresden Morcau died in his 
quarters; with Humboldt he rode over the field of 
Leipsic, when it was freshly torn by the ploughshare 
of military destruction; and on one occasion, near 
Chaumont, both emperor and ambassador, with their 
whole diplomatic staff, had to ride for their lives to 
escape the enemy, and never draw bridle until they 
had reached Dijon, about thirteen leagues distant. 
But besides a knowledge of the evils of war, with 
which such incidents made him personally acquainted, 
his situation as ambassador brought him frequently 
into cont.act with Trince Metternich and other foreign 
statesmen, by whose society his Conservative prin- 
ciples are supposed to have' been strengthened, and 
his policy as foreign minister of Britain afterwards so 
materially iniluenced. .-\fter securing the Emperor 
of .\u>tria to the cause of the alliedsovereigns, the 
llarl of Aberdeen was commissioned to withdraw 
Joachim Murat. King of Naples, from the cause of 
his brother-in-law Napoleon, who had trained him to 
greatness, and to whom he owed everything. Diplo- 
niacy has duties every wliit as stern and unmerciful 
as those of war, al;hi)UL;h they are more coollv and 
dispassionately performe<i; and the task of Aberdeen, 
which was to sow dissension among the kindred of 
the falling hero, and detach them from his cause, 
was by no- means pleasant, however justified by 



political necessity. Here also the carl was success- 
ful; and he "of the snow-white plume," the crowned 
dragoon who had so often in battle been Bonaparte's 
right arm, joined the allies, on the pr<jmi-.c of l)eiiig 
confirmed in his Neapolitan throne. These aliena- 
tions of his best supports, by which the downfal of 
the French emperor was insured more effectually 
than by his reverses in the field, were chiefly owing 
to the young Scottish statesman who, silently and 
with his pen, was directing those movements un<icr 
which the greatest of confjuerors succumbed. The 
earl remained in attendance upon the Austrian 
emperor until the termination of the war, and was 
present as British ambassador at Chatillon, where 
the congress of the allied sovereigns was assembled. 
When so many difficult claims were to be adjusted, 
it was necessary that Britain, the j^aymaster of the 
war, should be fully representetl; and thither ac- 
cordingly Lord Castlereagh, our foreign secretarj-, 
and .Sir Charles Stuart (afterwards Marquis of Lon- 
donderr\) were sent as colleagues to .Aberdeen and 
Lord Cathcart. It was a curious destination, by 
which two Irishmen were balanced by two Scots, as 
if the fervour of the one nation was to be kept in 
check by the proverbial cautiousness of the other. 
At the termination of the war in 1814, the I'^arl of 
Aberdeen was advanced to a British peerage by the 
title of Viscount Gordon. 

On the return of the earl to England with the high 
political prestige he had won, it might have been ex- 
pected that he would devote himself to ]niblic life, and 
take an important place in the administration. But 
previous to his mission to Vienna, his wife, a daughter 
of the first Marquis of Abercorn, whom he had 
married in 1805, died; and it is not impossible that 
in his acceptance of such an onerous charge, he 
sought the solace of a young widowed heart in the 
bustle of occupation. Be that as it may, when he 
returned home, he again sought domestic happiness 
by marrying the widow of \iscount Hamilton, the 
sister-in-law of his former wife, and mother of the 
second Marquis of Abercorn. Living aloof from the 
turmoil of politics and the allurements of ambition. 
he now devoted himself to those classical studies for 
which he had shown an early predilection, inter- 
mixed with exertions for the improvement of his 
estates and the comfort of his tei-;antry. I lis 
passion among these raral employments was chiefly 
the jilanting of trees, so that whole fore.-ts of which 
his old age saw the maturity, were the reward of his 
early exertions. In this peaceful manner his life was 
spent until the year 1S28, Avhen the Tories acquired 
the ascendency. In this case Lord Aberdeen was 
not to be overlooked, and under the administration 
of the Duke of Wellington he became secretan.- of 
foreign aftairs. In this important office he w.is 
enabled to realize his youthful aspirations in behalf 
of (Greece. That country, after a lone:, ruinous, and 
doubtful straggle against the overwb.elming ]io\\cr 
of Turkey, had taken fresh courage from the inter- 
ference of England, f>ance. and Russia in its bel'.alt, 
and the naval victory which the united lleets iif the^e 
three powers had olitained over the Turco-Kgyj.tian 
lleet in the battle of Navarino. In con-equencc ol 
this promising change, the (ireeks had renewed the 
unequal struggle, and, chiefly throv.L^h t!;e retf.r:i 
of "'.Vthenian Aberdeen" to jiolitical r,t;:ce. tb.c.r 
efforts were successful; and the erection o! tb.e jriiic;- 
pal states of tlrecce into an indepcniler.t Ildletr.c 
kingdom was the result. It was the first of a >er;cs 
of experiments in a great jiolitical problem, the \\ork- 
ing of which was reserved fortlie ninetcer.t!; cw.W.ry. 
and that still awaits solution. It may lie cr;];,-.! t!ie 
problem of the re-urrection of nation-. .\ i.ation. 



KARL OF ABERDEEN. 



after a life of eight or ten centuries, has finished its 
natural term of existence, anil wlien it expires its 
place is occupied by some young successor, who runs 
a similar career. But can a defunct nation live over 
aj^in ? The trial has been made in our own day, first 
with Clreece, and afterwards with Italy, while the 
final is>ue is still an uncertainty. 

With the exception of this interference in behalf 
of Greece. Lord .-\berdeen, as secretary for foreign 
atTairs, most scrupulously adhered to his principle of 
non-intervention. Thus, when Louis I'liilijipe was 
recognizeil by the French as tlieir king, insteail of 
stickling lor the rights of the elder branch of tiie 
Bourbons, he at once assented to the change, lie 
rcfuscl to involve tliis country in a war for the dis- 
j)l.acenient of l)v)m .Miguel from the u>urped throne 
of Portugal ; anil when the quadruple alliance was 
fonned by Lord I'almerston b.-tween England, 
France. .Spain, and Portugal, Lord .\berdeen was 
opposed to the measure. He al>o was anxious to 
maintain our peaceful relationships with Austria 
and Rus-i.a, when the popular feeling of Britain was 
inclined for war. But these pacific tendencies, uniler 
which our island became prosju'rous, were desjiised 
as the etTects of a timid or selfish policy; and his 
lordship was alternately reproached or ridiculed as 
the friend of foreign despots, and the secret enemy 
of British liberty. \'ery ditTerent was the view 
entertained in foreign courts, wliere he was regarded 
as a wise, humane, disinterested statesman. The 
same peaceful character regidated his conduct in 
reference Ui our disputes witii America, and it was 
under ius direction that Lord .\sii!:)urton negotiated 
those diificuit <)uestions about b jundaries by whicli 
a threatened war between Britain and liie United 
States was ha]>pily averted. 

The first tenure of office held by Lord Aberdeen 
as fjreign secretar)- was b. ought to a close in 1S30, 
by the accession of WUiiam IV., and the passing of 
the ref irm bll. But whetlier in or out of oflice, 
his pilitical cliaracter was so well established, that 
his opinions had always weight and intUience witli 
the rulnig i)owers. In 1X34, during .Sir Robert 
Beel's brief administration, he held office as colonial 
r^ccretary, and again under tiiat statesman in 1841, 
as fire:gii secretary; and he rendered material aid 
to Sir I\oi>jrt in carrying the repeal of the corn- 
laws. a:ii the ref)rins connected witli our com- 
merce. In tiiis matter of tile corn-laws, he was 
not obli^'ed, iiketiie premier and many of our states- 
men, to unreail iiis own declarations and falsify his 
former promises, as he had long seen tiie justice as 
well as ilie necessity of a repeal. The same consist- 
ency regulat.'d his con<luct in voting for liie re]ieal of 
the te>t and cori)oration acts, feeling as a I'resby- 
terian ;li.H the eucliarist was prof.uied -.viieii use<l as 
a i|uali!i>ation fir pu!)lic oliice. 

.\s I.Mi.j .\l>crdeeii was one of tlie few .Scottish 
not)lemeii who adhered to the national church of his 
own coun'ry, the events that led to tile disrui)tion in 
1S43 could not fail to secure his anxious attention. 
Tlie two ]..iities into wliicli the Ciiurcii of Scotlan<l 
had b_-e:i i'Hig divided, had at lengtii come to lioMile 
is-,ue; and a conflict was inevitalile, in wliich one 
or the otiier [larty inu^t go to t!ie wall. liis en- 
deavour^ t > reconcile tliem, and prevent such a con- 
sequerice, were l>otli sincere and earnest. I'ut tlic 
questiMii in debate among the contending clergvinen 
w.is so li'tle understi..i'l l)y the laity, and the ])olitics 
of the cliiirch are so dilTereiil from those of the state, 
tliat theli'-aling measures of mere dipiomatisi^, wliicli 
migiit jirevent two nations from going to war, will 
sometime- only aggravate a theological controversy. 
Each party is persuaded that its cause is that of eter- 



nal truth— that not a single pin of the sacred taber- 
nacle can be yielded u]3 without ruining the whole 
fabric — and that whosoever suggests such concession, 
can only be a Cjallio, who cares for none of these 
things. Such in the present case was the fate of 
Lord Aberdeen, and his statesmanlike proposals 
for their mutual reconciliation: his healing measure 
for that pui]X)se was supposed only to have hastened 
on the disruption which it sought to avert. The 
church was rent asunder, and while each party 
claimed to be the only true Church of Scotland, his 
])lan, called Lord Aberdeen's Act, which had been 
at once rejected by the Free Church, has been found 
by the other an impracticable device, and a blunder 
in ecclesiastical jiolity. It will be well when states- 
men cease to legislate in religious doctrines which 
they cannot understand, and in a spiritual govern- 
ment with which they should not meddle. 

On the retirement of .Sir Robert Peel after the 
corn-law bill had been carried, the I'^arl of Aber- 
deen followed his example, and on the melancholy 
and sudden death of the former, the earl was recog- 
nized as the heal of the party called the Peelites. 
Although small in numbers, and suffering under the 
odium occasioned by the abolition of the protection 
duties, they were still powerful from their position 
and political talents. This was acknowledged when 
both Whigs and Tories had failed to carry on the 
government, so that on the downfal of the Derby- 
Disraeli ministry in 1852, the earl was called upon to 
form a new administration. lie comjdied, and suc- 
ceeded by forming a coalition not of one, but of all 
parties, so that tlie new cabinet was composed of 
members of every shade of political opinion from the 
ultra-Tory to the extreme Radical. .Such a stretch 
of liberality, while it was demanded by the necessity 
of the occasion, would have found few statesmen 
capable of imitating. 

The first great trial of the new government with 
Lord .\bci'deen at its head, was the Russian war. 
The pacihc iirinciples by which his political life had 
been governed had now become with him a second 
nature, while the benefits of the long peace which 
had generally jirevailed in Europe during forty vears 
seemed to warrant their iiro])riety. Here his lordship 
was ]ilaccd in a manifest dilemma. A bold and de- 
cisive course might cither arrest the outlu'eak, or bring 
it only tile sooner into action. Dismayed by the un- 
certainty of such an experiment. Lord .Aberdeen tem- 
porized, first in the ho])e that war might be averted, 
and afterwards, that although declared it would not 
be carried out. In this vacillation he was seconded 
by some of the ablest members of the cabinet, so that 
when the Crimean war broke out the country was 
only half ])rc[)ared. On the events of this glorious 
1)111 unfortunate war we shall not here dwell: it is 
enough to state, that the ju-eparations to meet it 
were so defective, and tlie mode of carrying it on so 
unsatisfactory, tliat the ]-iublic discontent compelled 
the cabinet to resign. His lonlshi]) quitted office 
on the30tli of January, 1S55, and retired into private 
life; and while he carried with him the esteem of all 
jiaities, who acknowledged him to have been a wise 
and u|)right statesman, notwithstanding the defects 
of his administration, he was honoured by the 
queen with the order of the (Jaiter in acknowdcdg- 
ineiit of his ])ulilic services. 

While his lordsliip's ])olitical career had thus on 
the whole been illustrious, and so beneficial to his 
country, it was iii])riv.Tte life that his amiablequalities 
weie best felt and ajipreciated. He was enthusi- 
astically beloved by his tenants, to whom he was 
ever an indulg<-iit creditor; none of them were dis- 
trained fir rent or ejected for its non-payment; and 



JOHN ABERNETHY. 



while all of them were comfortable, not a few 
of them became rich under such a kind considerate 
landlord. He also showed, even when worn out 
with years and sickness, that however attached to 
peace with foreign powers, and non-intervention 
in their <}uarrels, he was ready to prefer war to 
peace when the honour or safety of the country was at 
stake. This he showed in the volunteer movement, 
when apprehensions of a foreign invasion called 
forth such an armed demonstration. The earl was 
one of its strongest supporters, and his tenantry 
raised the second rifle corps in Aberdeenshire, which 
had his son, the Hon. Arthur Hamilton Gordon, 
for its captain. One of his last public acts was to 
give a proof of his heartiness in this patriotic move- 
ment. On the 2d of October, i860, the earl invited 
the officers of the Methlic and Turves Volunteer 
rifles (his own tenants) to Haddo House, and pre- 
sented to each of them a handsome and valuable 
sword, bearing an inscription and the name of the 
donor — and this, too, when he was so weak that he 
was obliged to sit on a couch, and had hardly 
strength to lift the weapons. His lordship died on 
the 14th December, i860, at Arg)ll House, London, 
aged seventy-si.x. 

ABERNETHY, John, an eminent surgeon and 
writer on physiolog)'. The birth and parentage of 
this gentleman were so obscure, that it is impossible 
to say with certainty v.hether he was a native of 
Ireland or of .Scotland. It is even affirmed that he 
was himself ignorant of the country of his birth. 
Upon the supposition that he was born in Scotland, 
his name is introduced in the present work. The 
date of his birth is given loosely as 1763-64. His 
parents having brought him in his infancy to London, 
he commenced his education at a day-school in Loth- 
bury, where he acquired the elements of classical 
literature. Having afterwards been bound appren- 
tice to Mr. Charles Blick, surgeon to St. Bartholo- 
mew's Hospital, he had the advantage of attending 
that noble institution, where he eagerly seized every 
opportunity of making himself practically acquainted 
with his profession. He also had the advantage of 
attending the lectures of Mr. John Hunter, at the 
time when that gentleman was commencing the de- 
velopment of those great discoveries wliich have made 
his name so famous. The curiosity which those dis- 
coveries excited in the public at large, was felt in an 
uncommon degree by Mr. Abernethy, whose assiduity 
and ardour as a pupil attracted the notice of tlie 
lecturer, and rendered the latter his friend for life. 

While as yet a very young practitioner, his repu- 
tation procured for ^Ir. Abernethy the situation of 
assistant-surgeon at St. Bartholomew's; and he soon 
after commenced a course of lectures in the hospital, 
which, tliough not very successful at first, became in 
Lime the nio>t frequented of any in London, so as to 
lay the foundation of a medical school of the highest 
reputation in connection with this institution. On 
the death of Sir Charles Blick, his former master, 
Mr. Abernethy, now considered as the best teacher 
of anatomy, pliysiology, and surgery in the metro- 
polis, wa- elected surgeon to the hospital. 

The fir>l publications of Mr. Abernethy were a few 
physiological e-says, and one on lumbar abscess, 
which, with some additions, formed his first volume, 
published 1793-97, in Svo, under the title of .SV^;-. 
gical and PhysioU\-ical EiSiiys. These were char- 
acteri;rcd by the same strong sense, and plain and 
forcilile illu>tration. which marked everything that 
flowed from his tongue and pen till the end of his 
life. In 1S04 ajipeared another volume, entitled 
Siir^ii-a! Ol'sm-jtwis, containing' a Classijicaticn of 



Tumours, with Cases to illustrate the History of each 
Species; an Account of Diseases, ikic. ; and, in 1 806, 
Suri^ical Obsenalions, Part Second, containing an 
Account of Disorders of the Health in general, and 
of the Digestive Organs in particular, -u'hieh accom- 
pany Local Diseases, and obstruct their Cure. The 
fame of these treatises soon spread, not only through- 
out England, but over the continent of Europe; and 
the French surgeons, especially, did homage to the 
masterly spirit they evinced. Bold and successful 
operations, practical and lucid descriptions, original 
and comprehensive views, all combined to enhance 
the great reputation of the author, and to elevate the 
character of the national school of which he was so 
bright an ornament. 

In 1 8 14 Mr. Abernethy received what might be 
considered as the highest honour which his profession 
had to bestow, in being appointed anatomical lecturer 
to the Royal College of .Surgeons. An anecdote 
illustrative of his sound integrity is told in reference 
to this era of his life. A fellow of the college having 
remarked to him, that now they should have some- 
thing new, Mr. Abernethy seriously asked him what 
he meant. " Wiiy," said the other, " of course you 
will brush up the lectures which you have been so 
long delivering at St. Bartholomew's Hospital, and 
let us have them in an improved form." " Do you 
take me for a fool or a knave?" rejoined Mr. Aber- 
nethy. "I have always given the students at tlie 
hospital that to which they are entitled — the best 
produce of my mind. If I could have made my lec- 
tures to them better, I would instantly have made 
them so. I will give the College of .Surgeons pre- 
cisely the same lectures, down to the smallest details." 
In the year of this honourable appointment, he pub- 
lished An Inquiry into the Probability and Ra- 
tionality of Mr. Hunter s Iheory of Life; being the 
subject of the two first lectures delivered before the 
Royal College of .Surgeons of London. The aim 
of these lectures was to elucidate the doctrine pre- 
viously laid down by Mr. Hunter, that "life, in 
general, is some principle of activity added by the 
will of Omnipotence to organized structure, an 
immaterial soul being superadded, in man, to the 
structure and vitality which he possesses in common 
with other animals." Of this work, it is generally 
allowed that the intentions are better than the philo- 
sophy. 

Previously to this period, Mr. Abernethy had pub- 
lished other treatises besides those already named. 
One of the most remarkable was Surgical Obser- 
vations on the Constitutional Origin and 'J'realvicnt 
of Local Diseases, and on Aneurism, Svo, 1^09. 
His memorable cases of tying the iliac artery for 
aneurism are detailed in this volume; ca.-es which 
may almost be said to form an era in adventurous 
surgical experiment. Mr. Abernethy also wrote 
works on Diseases jrsenilling .Syf/iilis, and on 
Diseases of the L'rethra ; On Injuries of ti:e Hiii-i 
and Miscellaneous Subjects: and another volume ot 
Physiological Essays. He was likewise the ar/.hor 
of the anatomical and physiological articles in Kee- 
Cyclopedia, previous to the article Caiui. Ann'ng 
his various accom]:)lishments must i)e ranked a 
considerable acquaintance with chenv.-try; .ir.'l 
one of his numerous honours is the h.iv.iig, in c";v.- 
]>anywith Mr. Howard, discovered. Uihi.inaiing r.'.er- 
cury. 

Besides his business as a lecturer. Mr. A:>err.c;i;y 
cnjoved avast and lucrative prac;:ce as a si;r.,-ei>r.. 
His manner in both capacities w.is !n.irke>! :■; ni.-r.y 
eccentricitie<. Init particularly in the latter. He i."i;'d 
not endure the tedious and confused :-iarra:.\c~ w hi>.:i 
j-aticiUi arc apt to lay before a cjr.sult.r.g surgcjn, 



JOUX ABERNETIIY ALEXANDER ADAM. 



and, in checking these, wr.s not apt to regard much 
the rules of goo«.i-breeding. Considerable risks were 
thus encountered for the sake of his advice; but this 
wxs generally so excellent, that those who required 
it were seldom afraid to hai^ard the slight offence to 
their feelings with which it was liable to be accom- 
}ianie<l. >lany anecdotes of Mr. Al>emethy's ren- 
counters with liis jxitients are preserved in the pro- 
fession. The two following are given in Sir James 
Eyre's recent work, 'I'hf Stomach aitd its Dijificul- 
tus: — *' .\ ven.- talkative lady, who had wearied the 
temper of .Mr. .VlK-rncthy, which was at all times im- 
patient of gabble, was told by him the first moment 
that he could get a chance of speaking, to Ix; good 
enough to put out her tongue. ' Now, pray, madam.' 
said he, playfully, ' kci/>\\. out.' The hint was taken. 
He rarely met with his match, but on one occasion 
he fairly owned that he had. He was sent for to an 
innkec}^>or, who had had a quarrel with his wife, and 
who had score<l his face with her nails, so that the 
]K)or man was bleeiling antl much di>figurcd. Mr. 
.•VlH-rnethy considered this an o|:)portunity not to be 
lo>t for admonishing the offender, and said, ' -Nfadam, 
are you not ashamed of yourself to treat your husband 
thu>; the hu>l)and, who is the he.id of all, your head, 
madam, in fact?' 'Well, doctor,' fiercely retorted 
the virago, 'and may I not scratch my own head?' 
L'jHin thi> her friendly adviser, after giving directions 
f )r the i)enefit of the patient, turned upon his heel, 
and Confessed himself beaten for once." Hut abrupt- 
ness and rudeness were not his only eccentricities. 
He carried practical benevolence to a j^itch as far 
fr.im the common line as any of his other ]KCuliarities. 
Where poverty and disease jirevented patients from 
waiting u])on him in his own house, he was frequently 
known, not only to visit them constantly, and at 
inconvenient distances, without fee or reward, but 
generously to supply them from his own purse with 
wh.it their wants required. I'erhaps the most strik- 
ing, <jut of the numerous anecdotes which have been 
relate<l of him, in illustration of his eccentricities, is 
one "lescriptivc of his courtship, or rather of his no- 
tourtship. " While attending a lady for several 
weeks, he observed those admira!)Ie qualifications in 
ber daughter which he truly esteemed to be calcu- 
lated to make the marri.-ige state happy. .Accordingly, 
on a .Saturday, when taking leave of his patient, he 
.iddrc-.sc! her to the following purport: — ' \'ou are 
now so well that I need not see you after Monday 
next, vslieii I shall come and pay you my farewell 
visit, iJ'.it, in the meantime, I wisji yr)u and your 
daughter seriou>lyto consider the ]iropos.i] I am now 
ai> >ul to nnke. It is abrupt and unceremonious, I 
am aware; but the excessive occiipntion of niv time 
by my ]>r.)fe>si..iial duties affords me no lei-'ure to 
a'.comjvlidi what I desire by the more ordinary course 
of atteniKin and soln italiou. My annua! receipts 

amount to £ , an<l I can settle £ - on mv 

wife; my chiiader is generally known to tlie )niblic, 
so that voii may readily ascertain \\ liat it is. 1 jiave 
seen in your da-.ighter a tender and alfectioiiat.M iiild, 
an as^idti His and careful nurse, and a gentle and 
ladylike member of a family; siu h a persi.n nuist lie 
all that a lrid)and cild (ovet. an-l 1 offr mv hand 
and f)nune f-.r her aci.e])ta!Ki-. On .Monday! wiien 
I call. I ^hali ex]>e(t your d'-teriniiialion; (or I really 
have not time for the r-nitine of courtship.' In this 
humour the lady was wooed and wriii, and tlj'- union 
proved f )rtiinate in every req^ect. .A haj^jner couple 
never existed." 

-After a life of great activity, and whii h jproved of 
niu: h imrne'Iiate and remote -crvice to mankind, the 
s;;b;ect of this memoir expired, at EnficM, <iii the 
20th of .\pr 1, iSji. 



ADAM, Alexander, an eminent grammarian 
and writer on Roman antiquities, was born at Coats 
of Ikirgie, in the jxarish of Rafford and county of 
.Moray, about the month of June, 1741. His father, 
John Adam, rented one of those small farms which 
were formerly so common in the north of Scotland. 
In his earlier years, like many children of his own 
class, and even of a class higher removed above 
]ioverty, he occasionally tended his father's cattle. 
Heing destined by his parents, poor as they were, 
for a learned profession, he was kept at the parish 
school till he was thought fit to come forward as a 
bui-sar at the university of Aberdeen. He made 
this attempt, but failed, and was requested by the 
judges to go back and study for another year at 
school. This incident only stimulated him to fresh 
exertions. He was prevented, however, from renew- 
ing his attempt at Aberdeen, by the representations 
of the Rev. Mr. Watson, a minister at Edinburgh, 
and a relation of his mother, who induced him to try 
his fortune in the metropolis. He removed thither 
early in the year 1758; Ijut, it appears, without any 
assured means of supporting himself during the pro- 
gress of his studies. For a considerable time, while 
attending the classes at the college, the only means 
of subsistence he enjoyed consisted of the small 
sum of one guinea per quarter, which he derived 
from Mr. Alan Macconochie (afterwards Lord Mea- 
dowdmnk), for assisting him in the capacity of a tutor. 
The details of his system of life at this period, as 
given by his biographer Mr. Henderson, are pain- 
fully interesting. " He lodged in a small room at 
Restalrig, in the north-eastern suburbs; and for this 
accommodation he paid fourpence a-week. All his 
meals, except dinner, uniformly consisted of oatmeal 
made into porridge, together with small beer, of 
which he only allowed himself half a bottle at a time. 
When he wished to dine, he purchased a penny loaf 
at the nearest baker's shop; and, if the day was fair, 
he would des])atch his meal in a walk to the ]Meadows 
or Hope Park, which is adjoining to the southern 
])art of the city; but if the weather was foul, he had 
recourse to some long and lonely stair, which he 
would climb, eating his dinner at every step. By 
this means all expense for cookery was avoided, and 
he wasted neither coal nor candles; for, when he was 
chill, he used to run till his blood began to glow, 
and his evening studies were always prosecuted under 
the roof of some one or other of his companions." 
There are many instances, we believe, among .Scottish 
students, of tlie most rigid self-denial, crowned at 
length by s]dendid success; but there is certainly no 
case known in which the self-denial was so chastened, 
and the triumph so grand, as that of Dr. Adam. In 
1 76 1, when he was exactly twenty, he stood a trial 
for the situation of head teacher in George Watson's 
Hospital, Edinburgh, and was successful. In this 
place he is said to have continued about three years; 
during which he was anxiously engaged in cultivat- 
ing an intimacy with the classics — reading, with 
great care, and in a critical manner, the works of 
I Iciodotiis, Tiuicydides, Xenophon, Cicero, and 
l.i\y. His views were now directed towards the 
ciiureli. and he was on the eve of being licensed as 
a )ireacher of the gospel, when suddenly a prospect 
opened before him of becoming assistant, with the 
hope of being eventually the successor, of Mr. 
Mniheson, rector of the high-scluiol. This ajipoint- 
nieiit he obtained, and in I 771 the increased infirmi- 
tus of Mr. Mathieson threw the whole of this charge 
into the hands of Mr. .Adam. 

'1 he time when he assumed this respectable office 
«as very fortunate. I'.very de]iartment of knowledge 
in Sco'.land wa^ at this period adorned by higher 




f0 . r ■ ■, 



ALEXANDER ADAM 

names than had ever before graced it; and hence the 
office of master in the principal elementary school of 
the country presented to a man of superior qualifica- 
tions a fair opportunity of distinguishing himself. 
This opjiortunity was not lost upon Mr. Adam. He 
devoted himself with singular assiduity to his duties; 
and under his auspices the school gradually increased 
in numbers and reputation. Soon after his appoint- 
ment he began to compose a series of works to facili- 
tate tile stuiiy of the I^tin language. 1 1 is Kmiimcnts 
of Latin and English Grammar were published in 
1772, and though composed in a style which aj)- 
peared to the generality of teachers as a dreadful 
schism and heresy, met witli the approbation of a 
discerning few, whose praise was sufficient to over- 
balance the censure of the multitude. 1 1 is offi;nce 
consisted in the novel attempt to teach the gram- 
matical rules of Latin in English prose, instead of 
Latin prose or verse, which latter had been the time- 
honoured fashion of the schools both of England and 
Scotland since the days of the Reformation. The 
daring innovator was assailed with a storm of abuse 
by numerous individuals, more especially by those of 
his own profession. 

Among those who took an active part in condemn- 
ing his work, Dr. Gilbert Stuart was very con- 
spicuous. This extraordinary lilterateiir was a relation 
of Ruddiman; and, as an additional incentive to his 
hostility, conceived that Adam had gained the rector- 
ship of the high-school more by interest than by 
merit. He accordingly filled the periodical works of 
the day with ridicule and abuse directed against the 
unfortunate grammar. Amongst other pasquinades 
appeared an account, in Latin, of a Roman funeral, 
in which that work was personified as the dead body, 
while the chief mourner was meant to represent Mr. 
Adam sorrowing for the untimely fate of his best- 
beloved child. The other persons officiating are 
introduced under the technical terms in use among 
the ancient Romans; and, to heighten the ridicule, 
and give it aid from local circumstances, the ingenious 
satirist placed in front of the mourners a poor 
lunatic of the name of Duff, well known in Edinburgh 
at the time for his punctual attendance at the head 
of all funeral processions. While his work was still 
the subject of censure, the ingenious author was 
partly compensated for all his sufferings by a degree 
of LL. D., which was conferred upon him by the 
College of Edinburgh in 1780. Some years after 
the grammar began gradually to make its way in 
schools, and finally he had the satisfaction of seeing 
it adopted in his own seminary. Among the great 
names which at an early period had sanctioned it 
with their a]iprobation are those of Lord Kames, 
Bishop Lowth, and Dr. Vincent, master of St. Paul's 
School. 

Tile next work of Dr. Adam is entitled ,-/ Siinnnarv 
of GL\r:;raphy and History but the date of the first 
edition is not mentioned by his biographer. In 1791 
lie pul)lislied ills excellent compendium of Roman 
Ant'i.jnitics, and in iSoo iiis Classical flio::;raphy; 
for tlie copyright of the former he received ^600, 
and for that of the latter ;i{^300. Dr. Adam's last 
and perhaps his most ial^orious work was his l.atni 
Dictionary, put)lisiied in 1 805. Towartis tlie lie- 
ginning his illustrations are brief, but, as he proceeds, 
tiiey gradually liccome more copious. It was his 
intention to add an English-and- Latin ]"iart, and to 
enlarge the other to a con-^idcralile extent. In this 
flivourite plan he liad made some progress at the 
time of his death. 

On the I3tli of I>occmI)er, iSoo. Dr. ,\dam was 
seized in the iiigli-scliool with an alarming indi--]io- 
sition, -^x-hicli iiad all tiic appearance of apoplexy. 



ROBERT ADAM. 



13 



Having been conducted home, he was put to betl, 
and enjoyed a sound sleep, which appeared to have 
arrested the progress of the disease, fur he was after- 
wards able to walk about his room. Tlie apoplectic 
symptoms, however, returned in a few day^, and he 
fell into a state of stupor. His last words marked 
the gradual darkening of tiie ray of life and intellect 
beneath this mortal disorder. He said, "It grows 
dark, boys — you may go — " his mind evidentlv 
wandering at tiiat moment to the scene where he had 
spent the i^etter part of his life. This twilight soon 
settled down into the night of death: he expired 
early in the morning of the 1 8th I)ecenii)er, 1S09. 
The death of the amiable and excellent Dr. Adam 
operated among his numerous friends and admirers 
like a shock of electricity. Men of all ages and de- 
nominations were loud in lamenting an event which 
had bereaved them of a common Ijcnefactor. Tlie 
effect of the general feeling was a resolution to 
honour him with what was at that time a verv* rare 
circumstance in Scotland — a public funeral. 

The life of Dr. Adam proves, had any proof been 
wanting, the possibility of rising to distinction in tins 
country from any grade of life, and through what- 
soever intervening difficulties. In 1758 and 1759 he 
was a student living at the inconceivably huml)le rate 
of four guineas a year; in ten years thereafter he had 
qualified himself for, and attained, a situation which, 
in Scotland, is an object of ambition to men of con- 
siderable literary rank. The principal features of 
his character were, unshaken independence and in- 
tegrity, ardour in the cause of public liberty, the 
utmost purity of manners and singleness of heart, 
and a most indefatigable power of application to the 
severest studies. "His external ap]iearance was that 
of a scholar who dressed neatly for his own sake, but 
who had never incommoded himself with fashion in 
the cut of his coat or in the regidation of his gait. 
Upon the street he often appeared in a studious atti- 
tude, and in winter always walked with his hands 
crossed, and thnist into his sleeves. His features 
were regular and manly, and he was above the 
middle size. In his well-fomied proportions and in 
his firm regidar pace there appeared the marks of 
habitual temperance. He must have been geneially 
attractive in his early days; and, in his old age, his 
manners and conversation enhanced the value and 
interest of even,' qualification. When he addressed 
his scholars, when he commended excellence, or 
when he was seated at his own fireside with a friend 
on whom he could rely, it was delightful to be near 
him; and no man could leave his company without 
declaring that he loved Dr. Adam." 

ADA^I, RoRKRT, an eminent architect, was 
born at Edinburgh in the year 172S. His father, 
William Adam, of .Maryburgh, in the county ot 
Fife, also distinguished himself as an arch:toi.t: 
Ho]ietoun House and the Royal Infirmary at IJliii- 
burgli are specimens of his abilities. Robert. tl;e 
secontl son, inherited his father's ta>te, and livi.;! i:i 
a time more favourable to its develo]mient. He w:"-- 
educated in the university of E(lintn;r:,di. vliore \.c 
enjoyed the kind attentions of Robert>o;i, .'-^niitli. :.vA 
Ferguson, all of wliom were his father's Irin-.'is. A-> 
he advanced in life he was on friendly and ir/.inir.tL- 
terms with Archibald. Duke o\ Argvic, Sir (/I;.-;::..- 
Town^hcnil. and the Earl of Mnnsiicld. Al'..!;t tli.' 
vear 1714. with a view to iniiMove hi^ kni i\\ Ic'l^;'- "t 
architecture, ho tnivollcd on the C'ntincr.!. r.r.'l re- 
sided three years in Italy, nliere lie ~r.r\cye'l tb.c 
niagniliccp.t specimens of l\oni."in .nrJiito. 'urc. the 
buil<iin_L;-; of the ancients, in liis oj ;!.;>':■.. le.rg th'.- 
proper ~ch.,>' I of the r.rcl'.;:ccir.'..d .-tU'ler.:. Put 



14 



riOBERT ADAM 



while lie beheld with much pleasure the remains of 
the public buiUlinj^s of the Romans, he regretted to 
perceive that hardly a vestige of their private houses 
or villas was anywhere to be found. The interest 
which he felt in this particular branch of Roman re- 
mains, and Iiis anxiety to behold a good specimen of 
the private buildings of this wonderful peojile, induced 
liim to undertake a voyage to Sjialatro, in Dalniatia, 
to visit and examine the palace of Dioclesian, where, 
after his resignation of the cm]>ire, in 305, that 
emperor spent the last nine years of his life. He 
sailetl from \enice in 1754, accompanied by two ex- 
perienced draughtsmen and M. Clcrisseau, a French 
antiiiuary and arti^t. On their arrival at .Spalatro 
they found that the palace had not sutTerctl less from 
dilapidations by the inhabitants, to j^rocure materials 
for building, than from the injuries of time; and that, 
in many i)laces, tlie ver)- ft)undations of the ancient 
structures were covered with modern houses. ^Vhen 
they began their labiturs the vigilant jealousy of the 
goveniinent was alarmed, and they were soon inter- 
rupted; foi, sus|H;cting their object was to view and 
make plans of tlie fortitications, the governor issued 
a peremptory order, commaniling them to desist. 
It was only through the inlluence and mediation of 
(Jeneral (Ir.eme, the commander-in-chief of the 
\'cnetian f>rces (probably a Scotsman), that they 
were at length ])erniitte.l to resume their labours; and 
in five weeks they tnii>hccl plans and views of the 
remaining fragments, from which they afterwards 
executed perfect designs of the whole building. Mr. 
Adam soon after returned to England, and speedily 
r-)se to profcs>ional eminence. In 1762 he was ap- 
]M)inted architect to their majesties, and in the year 
f)llowing h_' i)ublished, in one ^•^)Iume large folio, 
A'li.iis of tlw /\i'tu'c' of the Iii}tp:ror Diodesian at 
S^ii'.jtro, 11: Dalm.itia. This ^plendid work con- 
tain^ seventy. one ]ilates, besides letter-press descrip- 
t!<);i>. lie had at this time been elected a member 
of tile Royal and .\ntiquarian .Societies, and in 1768 
he w.as elected to represent Kinross-shire in parlia- 
ment, wiiich was pr<jl)a!)ly owing to the local inllu- 
ence of !»!> family. A seat in the Ilou->e of Commons 
being incompatible with emjiloymeiit under the 
crown, he now resigned liis oftice as architect to their 
maje^tie^; hut continued t(j ]')ro>ccute his professional 
career witli increasing reputation, being much em- 
ployed by the Kngli^li nobility and gentry in con- 
structing new and embellishing ancient mansions. 
In the year 177.^ in conjunction with his brother, 
James .Adam, wlio abo rose to considerable reputa- 
t.on as an .ircllitect, lie commenced 'J'h,- Works in 
Ar,'i:t,rlii)\- of R. r.nl J. .U/.iin, which before 
1776 hid r.-acliel a fouiih luniilicr. and was a Nvork 
of equal .spleiiiour with the one above referred to. 
The f '-.ir numbers contain, among (jtlier ])roductions, 
Sion House, Caen \Vo.,d. I.utoii Park llouse, the 
< iateway of !h" .\diniralty. and the- (ieiieral Register 
House at Ivimburgli; all of which have been admired 
f)r elegant <lesigii and curecl taste, though the 
J. resent .age. in its rage f.r a s.-vere ^iin]ilicity. might 
desire the absence* of cc-rtain niimite oninmeiits with 
which the .Adams were accustomed to fill ii|) vacant 
si)aecs. Kefore this period the two brotln-rs had 
reared in I.onrlon that s],leii'li'l iiiMnumeiit of tiieir 
ta-te -the .\deiphi, which, however, was too exten- 
sive a "-peculation to be I'rofilable. Tliev wrre 
obliged ill 1774 to iibtain an act of parliaiiirnt to djs- 
])Ose of th-- houses by way of lottery. The c liief 
.Scottish 'Icsigris of .\dam, be-i lesth-' K^'gister ( )\\\> l\ 
were the new ad'htions to the L'iiiv--rsiiv n{ Ivjin- 
burgh and the Infirmary of (ilasg.iw. "We have 
r.lsr) seen and admired,'" says a biograjih-r. "elegant 
designs executed by Mr. Adam, which were intended 



PATRICK ADAMSON. 

for the South Bridge and South Bridge Street of 
lulinburgh; and which, if they had been adopted, 
would have added much to the decoration of that 
part of the town. But they were considered un- 
suitable to the taste or economy of the times, and 
were therefore rejected. Strange incongruities," con- 
tinues the same writer, "appear in some buildings 
which have been erected from designs by Mr. Adam. 
Rut of these it must be observed, that they have been 
altered or mutilated in execution, according to the 
convenience or taste of the owner; and it is well 
known that a slight deviation changes the character 
and mars the effect of the general design. A lady of 
rank was furnished by Mr. Adam with the design of 
a house; but on examining the building after it was 
erected, he was astonished to find it out of all pro- 
portion. On inquiring the cause he was informed 
that the pediment he had designed was too small to 
ailmit a piece of new sculpture which represented the 
arms of the family, and, by the date wdiich it bore, 
incontestably proved its antiquity. It was therefore 
at)solutely necessary to enlarge the dimensions of the 
jiediment to receive this ancient badge of family 
honour, and sacrifice the beauty and proportion of the 
whole building. We have seen a large public build- 
ing wdiich was also designed by Mr. Adam; but when 
it was erected the length was curtailed of the space 
of two windows, while the other parts remained ac- 
cording to the original plan. It now appears a heavy 
unsightly pile, instead of exhibiting that elegance of 
proportion and correctness of style which the faithful 
execution of Mr. Adam's design would have probably 
given it. To the last period of his life Mr. Adam 
displayed the same vigour of genius and refinement 
of taste; for in the sjiace of one year immediatelv 
preceding his death he designed eight great public 
works, besides twenty-five private buildings, so 
various in style, and beautiful in coinposition, that 
they have been allowed by the best judges to be 
sufficient of themselves to establish his fame as an 
unrivalled artist." Mr. Adam died on the 3d of 
March, 1792, by the bursting of a blood-\essel, in 
the sixty-fourth year of his age, and was buried in 
Westminster Abbey. It remains only to be said 
that, while his works commanded the admiration of 
the public, his natural suavity of maimers, joined to 
his excellent moral character, had made a deep ini- 
]iression upon the circle of his own private friends. 
His brother James, who has been referred to as 
associated with him in many of his works, died 
October 20, 1794. 

ADAMSON, Hf.NRY, a poet of the seventeenth 
century, and ]irobably a relative of the subject of the 
following article, was the son of James Adamson, 
who was dean of guild in I'erth, anno 1600, when 
the (](Avrie conspiracy took ])lace in that city. The 
poet was educated for the jnilpit, and ajipcars to 
have made considerable ])rogress in classical studies, 
as he wrote Latin poetry above mediocrity. He en- 
joyed the friendship and esteem of a large circle of 
the eminent men of that age, jiarticnlarly Drummond 
of Hawthorndcn, who induced him, in 163S, to 
]niblish a ]K)ein entitled Mirtlifiil Ahisiut^s for the 
Ihnth of Mr. Call; being in fact a versified history of 
his native town, hill of quaint allegorical allusions 
siiitahle to the taste of that age. A new editi(m of 
this curious pdciii, which had become exceedingly 
rare, was luiblished in 1 774, with illustrative notes 
l>y Mr. Jaincs (/ant. The ingenious author died in 
l')39, the year alter the jiublication of his poem. 

_ ADAMSON, Patiuck, Archbishop of St. 
.■\ndrc\V3. '1 his prelate, whose name occupies so 



PATRICK ADAMSOX. 



15 



remarkable a place in the history of the Scottish 
reformation, was born of humble parents, in the 
town of Perth, in or nigh the year 1543. He 
studied at the university of St. Andrews, and, after 
having gon.- through the usual course, he graduated 
as Master of Arts. His name at this period was 
Patrick Consteane, or Constance, or Constantine, 
for in all these forms it is written indifferently; but 
how it afterwards passed into Adamson we have 
no means of ascertaining. At the close of his 
career at college, he opened a school in Fife, and 
soon obtained the notice and patronage of James 
M'Gill of Rankeillor, one of the judges of the 
Court of Session, who possessed considerable 
political influence. lie had not long been minis- 
ter of Ceres, to which he had been appointed, when 
we find him impatient to quit his charge; and accord- 
ingly, in 1564, he applied to the General Assembly 
for leave "to pass to other countries for a time, to 
acquire increase of knowledge," but was inhibited to 
leave his charge without the Assembly's license. 
That license, however, he seems at length to have 
obtained, and probably also before the meeting of the 
Assembly in the following year, when they published 
such stringent decisions against those ministers who 
abandon their spiritual charges. Patrick Con- 
stance, or, as we shall henceforth call him, Adam- 
son, now appointed tutor of the son of M'Gill of 
Rankeillor, passed over with his young charge, 
who was destined for the study of the civil law, to 
Paris, at that time the chief school of the dis- 
tinguished jurisconsults of Europe. 

Adamson had not been long in Paris when such 
adventures befell him as might well make him sigh 
f )r the lowly obscurity of Ceres. In the course of 
events that had occurred in Scotland during his 
absence, were the marriage of Queen Mary and 
Henry Darnljy, and the birth of their infant, after- 
wards James VI.; and -Vdamson, who at this time 
was more of a courtier than a politician, and more 
of a poet than eitiier, immediately composed a 
triumphant "carmen" on the event, entitled, Scrcn- 
issimi et nobilissimi ScotLc, Aiigliir, Franciic, d 
liibcrniiC Priiicipis, Hctirici Stiiarti Illtistrissimi 
IIiTois, ac Maria: Kcs^iiicr amplissiviiZ Fdii, Gcncth- 
liacum. The very title was a startling one, both 
to France and England, the great political questions 
of which countries it at once prejudged, by giving 
them the Scottish queen for their lawful, indisput- 
able sovereign. Had this poem, which was pub- 
lished a few days after the event, been produced 
in England, its author would scarcely have escaped 
the Star Chamber; but as it was, he was within 
the reach of Catherine de Medicis, to the full as 
jealous of her authority as Elizabeth herself 
Adamson was therefore rewarded for his Latin 
poetry by a six months' imprisonment, which jier- 
liaps would have been succeeded by a worse in- 
fliction, h.i<l it not been for the mediation of Mary 
herself, backed by that of some of her chief nobles. 
It did not at that time suit the policy of France to 
break with Scotland, and the poet was set at 
liberty. Having thus had a sufficient sojourn in 
Paris, .Vdam-on repaired with his pupil to Bourges, 
where both entered themselves as students of law. 
Even here, however, he was not long allowed to 
remain in safety. Tiie massacre of St. ]5arthoIomew 
— that foul national blot of France, and anomalv 
of modern hi>tory -bur-^t out with the sufldenness 
of a ti.irnado, an I, ani;d>t the ruin that followed, 
no Protestant could be a>>ured of his life for a 
single hour. .Vdamson had his full share of the 
danger, and narrowly escajied by finding shelter 
in a lowly hostelry, the mister of which was after- 



wards flung from the top of his own house, and 
killed on the pavement below, for having given 
shelter to heretics. While immured in this dreary 
confinement for seven months, and which he fitly 
termed his sepulchre, Adamson consoled himself 
with Latin poetry upon themes suited to his con- 
dition; one attempt of this nature being the tragedy 
of Herod, and the other a version of the book of 
Job. As soon as he was able to emerge, one of 
the first uses which he made of his libL-rty was to 
return home and resume those ministerial labours 
which he had good cause to regret he ever had 
abandoned. 

This return was at a critical period; for the arch- 
bishopric of St. Andrews was at that time vacant, 
and, notwithstanding the Presbyterian doctrine '~A 
parity, which had been laid down as a fundamental 
principle of the Scottish church, the chief prelatic 
offices were still continued, through the ovcrljearing 
influence of those nobles who now directed the 
government. But it was from no love of Episcopacy 
in the abstract that these magnates continued such 
charges, obnoxious though they were to the church 
and the people at large, but that they might derive 
from them a profitable revenue as lay proprietors 
of the livings. In this way the Earl of Morton had 
acquired a claim to the revenues of the archbishcipric 
of St. Andrews, and only needed some ecclesiastic 
who could wear the title, and discharge its duties, 
for a small percentage of the benefice. It was a 
degrading position for a churchman, and yet there 
were too many willing to occupy it, either from 
love of the empty name, or an ambitious hope of 
converting it into a substantial reality. Among 
these aspirants for the primacy of Scotland, Patrick 
Adamson was suspected to be one; and it was thought 
that he hoped to succeed through the intluence of 
his patron, M'Gill of Rankeillor. These surmises 
his subsequent conduct too well justified. But 
Morton had already made his election in favour of 
John Douglas, who was inducted into tlie otTice, 
notwithstanding the earnest remonstrances of John 
Knox. The conduct of Adamson on this occasion 
was long after remembered. The week after the 
induction, and when the greatest conccjurse of 
people was expected, he ascended the puli^it and 
delivered a vehement and sarcastic sermon against 
the episcopal office as then exercised in .Scotland. 
"There are three sorts of bishops," he said; "my 
lord bishop, my lord's bishop, and the Lorti's 
bishop. My lord bishop was in the Papistry; my 
lord's bishop is now, when my lord gets the bene- 
fice and the bishop serves for nothing but to make 
his title sure; and the Lord's bishop is t!ie true 
minister of the gospel." He saw that, lor tlie 
present at least, he could not be jirimate of St. 
.Vndrews, and therefore turned his attenti'.n to tlie 
more humble otTices of the church. Aii'i there, 
indeed, whatever could satisfy the wishes ot' a .simple 
presliyter was within his reach; for he \\a- r."t oi.Iy 
in general esteem among his brethren, bi:t liiglily 
and justly valued fir his scholarsliip, and liis cate- 
cliism of Calvin in Latin liernic verse, wlii^!'. he \\?A 
written in France, and was about to jr.i'Ksh ir. 
Scotland with the approbation of the tleiier.d .\-- 
sembly. He now announceil his willin.;rie~- to re- 
sume the duties of the mini-tr}-; and the t-wn ■ 1 
Paisley became his sjihere oi' duty. acC' U'iir.^ !■■ '.he 

j appointment of the .\sse:nMy. In aii'iiti";-. '<■• '.!••-. 

' he was subse-iuently appointed c^ 'nimis-:. •r.er i-l 
Gallowav, an otVice which rcseniMcd tli.it c ; .1 1 >Iii'ji 
as to its duties, but dive-ted of all its ; :e-eir.i:ie;Ke 

i anfl emolument. Some •>!' tlie ho-t ir.eu . i ;!ie k'.rk 
had undertaken this thankl-.s-s uiV;ce with a"..iCrity, 



i6 



PATRICK ADAMSON. 



and dischargeil its duties with diligence, but such 
was not the case with I'atrick Adamson; and when 
his remissness as a commissioner was complained of 
to the General Assembly, he acknowledged the 
justice of the accusation, but pleaded in excuse that 
no stipend was attached to the office. 

Of the labours of Adamson while minister of 
Paisley no record has been preserved. His time 
there, however, w.as brief, as a new sphere was 
opened to his ambition. The great subject of 
an.xicty at this period in the church was the con- 
struction of the /)W,i' of Policy, otherwise called the 
SaonJ Poo': of Disciplnu; and procuring its ratifi- 
cation by the government; but the chief obstacle in 
the way was the Karl of Morton, now regent, whose 
principal aim, besides enriching himself with the 
ecclesiastical revenues, was to bring the two churches 
of England and Scotland into as close a conformity 
as jK)ssible, in order to facilitate the future union of 
the two kingdoms under the reign of his young 
master, James \'I. Here it is that we find Adamson 
busy, ile b-jcame an active negotiator for the Book 
of i'oluy, and while he managcil to secure the confi- 
dence of the lea<iing men in the churcli, he ingrati- 
ated himself into the favour of the regent; so that 
when the latter chose him for his chaplain, the 
brethren seem to have hojied that the accomplish- 
ment of their purpose would l)e facilitated by having 
such an advocate at court. But never were ecclesi- 
astics more thoroughly iiisap])ointed in their hopes 
from such a quarter. The archbisho)iric of St. An- 
drews had again become vacant, and .Morton nomin- 
ated Adamson to the see, who, on receiving tlie ap- 
pointment, began even already to show that he would 
hold it iiuL'pendently of the authority of tlie churcli 
by refusing to submit to the usual trial and examina- 
tion <jf the .\ssembly. While chaplain to the regent, 
he had been wont, while preaching and giving his 
glosses upon texts of .Scripture, to say, "The i)roi)het 
would mean this" — a phrase so usual with him on such 
occasions that his hearers coultl not help noticing it. 
At length, when he became ])rimale of .Scotland, 
Captain .Moiitgomery, one of the regent's officers, 
exclaimed, with dry humour, "I never knew what 
the prophet meant till now I'' As Adanison's enter- 
ing into the archbish<jpric was such an act of con- 
travention to the authority of the church, the As- 
sembly, at one of its meetings in 1577, resolved to 
institute jirifcecdings against the ofTender. Ihit even 
this formidable danger he was able to avert for the 
time with his wonted craft. He ]in;fessed the 
utmijst Iniinility, and offered to lay d<jwn his office 
at the feet of the .Assembly, and be or(lere<l at their 
ple.isure, l)Ut represented h(jw desirable it would be 
t ) p')-.tpon'.- all such proceedings until tlic Book of 
Policy had l>.-en finished, and ratified by the regent. 
The matter was thu-. reduced to a mere question of 
lime, and his sugge^tiorl prevailed. 

'Ihe great suliject now at i^-ue wa^ the l^ook of 
p.cclcsHUticil /W/<j' -the M.agna Charla of the 
Church of Scotland -upon the ]).assing of which its 
rights and lil)ertics as a national church were at stake. 
It wa>, as might have l)cen expected, completely 
pre^byterian in its <ii..ci]iliiie, an<l subversive of that 
cpi-CM])al nde which the court was labouring to 
estal.ilis!i. .\mong these enactments it was decreed 
that no hi^hoj) should be designated by his til It', Imt 
hi-s own name, as a brutlier, seeing he iielniigcd to a 
church that has but one Lord, even (lirist that no 
bisho|)S should thencefirtli be a]ipointed in it; and 
that no ministir shnild accejjt tlie office on pain of 
deprivation. .Against such cr)nclu>ions it is not 
Wonderful that .\damson demurred. I'.ut a^ himself 
and thj iJidiop of Aberdeen constituted the entire 



minority in the Assembly, his opposition went no 
further than to procrastinate any final conclusion. 
But the Policy was at length concluded, and ready 
to be presented to the government, and for this 
Adamson h.ad reserved his master-stroke. The book 
was to be subscribed l)y every member individually, 
but this form the archbishop opposed. "Nay," he 
said, "we have an honest man, our clerk, to sub- 
scribe for all; and it would derogate from his faithful- 
ness and estimation if we should all severally sub- 
scribe." The brethren assented to the proposal, 
although some of them seem to have entertained a 
lurking suspicion that all was not right; so that Mr. 
Andrew Hay, minister of Renfrew, could not help 
exclaiming, "Well, if any man comes against this, 
or denies it hereafter, he is not honest." He stepped 
up to Adamson, and said to him in the presence of 
three or four by-standers, "There is my hand, Mr. 
Patrick; if you come against this hereafter, consent- 
ing now so thoroughly to it, 1 will call you a knave, 
were it never so publicly." The Jkwk of Policy was 
to be jircsented to the Lords of Articles for ratifica- 
tion on the part of the government; and strangely 
enough, Adams-^n was commissioned to present it. 
Morton and the lords asked him if he had given his 
assent to these enactments, to which he answered 
that he had not, and that he had refused to subscribe 
to them. Here was a loophole of escape for the 
council: the Archl)ishop of St. Andrews had with- 
held his assent, and they could do no less than follow 
the example. The book was rejected, and the 
ministers were left to divine the cause of the refusal. 
But Andrew Hay, on incpiiring of several members 
of council, who told him the particulars, and laid the 
whole blame of the refusal on Adamson, soon saw 
that he had a pledge to redeem; and on the arch- 
bishop passing Ijy at that instant, he griped him by 
the hand, looked him angrily in the face, and ex- 
claimed, in presence of the others, "O knave, knave, 
I will crown thee the knave of all knaves!" It is 
enough to add here, that the Book of Policy, after 
having been delayed three years hunger, was in 158 1 
thoroughly ratifietl and ordained in every point, and 
orderetl to be registered in the books of the Assembly. 
As for Adamson, we find him employed during this 
interval in preaching in St. Andrews, lecturing in 
the college, and attending the meetings of the 
(ieneral Assembly, but with no greater authc^rity 
than that of the ordinary brethren. But symptoms 
even already liatl shown that the court favour upon 
which he was willing to build was but a sandy 
foundation, for his powerful ]iatron, the I'.arl of 
.Morton, ha<l been brought to the block. lie j^re- 
]iared himself, therefore, to recognize the authority 
of the kirk in the doctrine of bishojis, to which he 
had been op]iosed, and even gave his subscription to 
the articles of the Jiook of J\ilicy, which he had 
hitherto withheld. This was in .St. Andrews, 
before the celebrated Andrew Melville and a parly 
of his friends who were assembled with him. Jhit 
all this was insufficient: he must also secure the 
favour of the party in ]iowcr, wliatever for the time 
it might be; and for this pur])ose he ])assed over to 
Ldinburgh, and took his seat in the Convention of 
Lstates. Here, however, his recei)lion was so little 
to his liking, tliat he found he mu-t side wholly with 
the kirk. He therefore addressed himself to the 
niinisteis of Ivlinburgh with jirofcssions which 
his sul>se(iuent conduct showed to be downright 
liyi>ocrisy. lie told them that he had come over to 
tlie court in the spirit of Balaam, on purjiose to curse 
the kirk and do evil; but that (iod had so wrought 
with him, that his heart was wholly changed, so that 
he had advocated and voted in the churcli's behalf — 



PATRICK ADAMSON. 



17 



and that hencefortli he would show further and further 
fruits of his conversion and good meaning. This self- 
abasing comparison of himself to Balaam must have 
staggered the unfavourable suspicions of the most 
sceptical; at all events, it did so with the apostolic 
John Duric, who rejoiced over the primate's conver- 
sion, and wrote a flattering account of it to James 
\relville. The latter, in consequence, visited Adam- 
son upon his return, and tolfl him the tidings he had 
received, for which he heartily thanked God, and 
offered the archbishop the right hand of Christian 
fellowship. The other, still continuing his penitent 
grimace, described the change that had passed upon 
him at great length, which he attributed to the work- 
ing of the .Spirit within him. Perhaps he overacted 
his part, for Melville only observed in reply, "Well, 
that Spirit is an upright, holy, and constant Spirit, 
and will more and more manifest itself in effects; but 
it is a fearful thing to lie against him!" 

It was indeed full time for the Archbishop of St. 
Andrews not only to recover his lost credit with the 
kirk, but the community at large. He was generally 
accused of the vices of intemperance and gluttony; 
he was noted as an unfaithful paymaster, so that he 
stood upon the score of most of the shopkeepers in 
the town; and what was still worse, he was accused 
of consorting with witches, and availing himself of 
their unlawful power! We of the nineteenth century 
can laugh at such a charge, and imagine it sufficient 
not only to disprove itself, but weaken all the other 
charges brought against him. But in the sixteenth 
century it was no such laughing matter; for there 
were not only silly women in abundance to proclaim 
themselves witches, but wise men to believe them. 
Even the pulpits of England as well as .Scotland re- 
sounded with sermons against witchcraft; and the 
learned and wise Bishop Jewel, while preaching be- 
fore Eli/.aboth, assured her majesty that the many 
people who were dying daily, in spite of all the aid 
of leechcraft, were thus brought to their end by spells 
and incantations. While this was the prevalent be- 
lief, a person having recourse to such agency was 
wilfully and deliberately seeking help from the devil, 
and seeking it where he thought it could best be 
found. Now Adamson, among his other offences, 
had fallen into this predicament. He was afHicted 
with a painful disease, which he called a "fcedity;" 
and being unable to obtain relief from the regular 
practitioners, he had recourse to the witches of Fife, 
and among others, to a notable woman, who pre- 
tended to have learned the art of healing from a 
physician who had appeared to her after he was dead 
and buried ! This wretched creature, on being ap- 
prehended and convicted of sorcery, or what she 
meant to be such, was sentenced to sufter death, as 
she would have been in any other country of Europe, 
and was given in charge to the archbishop for exe- 
cution. But the woman made her escape, and this, 
it was suppo-^ed, she did through Adamson's con- 
nivance. .Xfter this statement, it needs scarcely be 
wondered at that foremost in the accusations both 
from the pulpit and in church-courts, the crime of 
seeking aid from Satan should have been specially 
urged again>t him. The m.an who will attempt "to 
call spirits from the vasty deep," incurs the guilt of 
sorcery whether they come or not. 

While such wa-> tiic evil jilight to which the arch- 
bisho]) was reduced, and out of which he was trving 
to struggle as he best could, the condition of pul)lic 
afifiiirs was scarcely more ]iromising for his interests. 
In the Assembly held in .\pril, 1582. he had seen 
Robert Montgomery, Archbisliop of Glasgow, who 
was his constant ally in every ejiiscopal movement, 
arraigned at their bar, reduced to the most humbling 

VOL. I. 



confessions, and dismissed with the fear of deposition 
hanging over him. In the same year, the Raid of 
Ruthven had occurred, by which' the roval power 
was coerced, and presbytery established in greater 
authority than ever. Dismayed by these ominous 
symptoms, Adamson withdrew from ])ublic notice 
to his castle of St. Andrews, where he kept himself 
"like a tod in his hole," giving out that his painful 
"fcedity" was the cause of his retirement. But at 
length the sky began to brighten, and the primate to 
venture forth after a whole year of concealment. 
The king emancipated himself from his nobles of the 
Raid, and came to .St. Andrews, upon which the 
archbishop, flinging off his sickness like a worn-out 
cloak, resumed his abandoned puljiit with royalty 
for an auditor, and preached such sermons as were 
well fitted to ingratiate himself into the favour of the 
young sovereign. They were furious declamations 
against the lords of the Raid, against the ministers 
of the kirk by whom they had been countenanced, 
and against all their proceedings by which the head- 
long will of James had been reduced within whole- 
some limits; and these, too, were delivere<l in such 
fashion, as, we are informed by James Melville, " that 
he who often professed from the pulpit before that 
he had not the spirit of application, got the gift of 
application by inspiration of such a spirit as never 
spoke in the Scriptures of God." Among the other 
effects of the Raid of Ruthven, was the 1 anishment 
of the king's unworthy favourites, the Earl of Arran 
and the Duke of Lennox, the former from the royal 
presence, and the latter from the country-; and Len- 
nox took his exile so much to heart, that he died 
soon after he arrived in France, while James con- 
tinued to bewail his loss. Here, then, was a favour- 
able theme for the archbishop. The chief offence 
alleged against Lennox was, that though outwardly 
a Protestant, he had not only lived, but even died, a 
Papist; and from this stigma it was .-\damson's main 
effort to clear the memory of the departed. He there- 
fore boldly asserted, in his sermon, that Lennox had 
died a good Protestant, and in proof of this he ex- 
hibited in the pulpit a scroll, which he called the 
duke's testament. It happened unluckily for the 
preacher, however, that an honest merchant woman, 
who sat near the pulpit, looked narrowly at this 
important document, and saw with astoni.-hment 
that it was an account of her own, which she had 
sent to the archbishop for a debt of some four or five 
years' standing, but which, like other reckonings of 
the kind, he had left unpaid ! 

.•\damson's loyalty was soon rewarded, and in a 
way that best accorded with his wishes. He was to 
be employed as ambassador or envoy from the king 
to the court of London. What was the osten>il)Ie 
object of his mission does not appear; but its real 
purport was, the suppression of Presbyteriani>m in 
.Scotland, and the establishment of such a form of 
Episcopacy in its stead as might make the union C'l 
the two countries more comjilete, when James .-hould 
become king of botli. But in such .in office tlie 
messenger behoved to go warily to work. a> f.Iiza- 
beth was apt to take fire at every movement t!~.at 
pointed to a succession in her throne. Ar.oth.er 
serious difficulty interposed in the ven.- tlireshold ut 
the archbisho]>'s dej^arture. He had aheai!}' been 
charged before the probvten.- of St. .Andrews, as 
corruj)t both in life and doctrine: tb.e trial w.-- re- 
moved to the svnod. and was finally remitic] t" :!>: 
General Assembly, at whose bar he nn;>t -i-.^tih' !;:ni- 
sclf, or lie deposed for noii-ajij.earance; aivi i.e t:.'.;-^ 
felt himself between the boms ff a dileiiin.a in w!;:c:i 
his compearance or absence miglit i^e ei:.:a:iy l.Tt.-i. 
If, however, he could onlv get the trial ^;c:a}c i i:r.'.:l 

2 



PATRICK ADAMSON. 



he had accomplished his mission, he might then 
brave it, or quash it with impunity. He therefore 
calle<l sickness to his aid, and pretended that he was 
going to the wells of Spa, in Germany, for the re- 
covery of his health; and this was nothing more than 
reasonable, even though he should take London by 
the way. Forth therefore he went, unhin<iered and 
unsuspected; and, if there is any tnith in Thi- 
L^i^cmi of thf I.ymmars /.//<•, a satirical poem 
written by Rol)ert Semple, tlie archbisho])'s conduct 
during this embassy was anytliing but creditable to 
his employers. His chief aim, indeed, seems to have 
been to replenish his extenuated purse; and, provided 
this was accomplished, he was not scru]iulous about 
the means. Even horses, books, and gowns came 
into his permanent possession under the name of 
loans. His approach to tlie palace for his first, and, 
as it turned out, his last audience, was equally un- 
seemly, for he useil the hallowed wall of the jwlace 
of the virgin queen with as little fastidiousness as 
if it had l>een the ding)- habitation of some Scottish 
biron in one of the closes of the Canong.ate, so that 
a porter, who espied him from the gate, rushed out 
and rebuked his indecorum with a cudgel. But, 
amidst all his Scapin-like tricks in the English 
metropolis, fmm which he seems to have derived for 
the time a comfortable revenue, Adamson was not 
unmindful of the real object of his journey, which he 
pursued with a diligence worthy of a better cause. 
He endeavoured to enlist the prejudices of the (jueen 
against the mmisters of Scotland, and such of the 
nobility as favoured them; he consulted with tlie 
bishops upon the best means of conforming the 
Scottish to the English church; and, aware of the 
puqwse of his own court to l)anish or silence tlie 
iK'st of the clergy, he wished them to send learned 
and able ministers to sup])ly the pulpits of those who 
were to Ik; displaced. 15ut. not content with this, 
he endeavoured to bring the Kirk of Scotland into 
<iiscredit with the foreign reformed churches of 
France, Cieneva, and Zurich, by sending to them a 
list of garbled or distorted jiassagcs as propositions 
extracted from the Scottish Confession, and craving 
tlieir o]iinion as to their soundness. It was a crafty 
device, and might have been attended with much 
mischief, had it not been that an antidote to the 
bane was at this time in England, in tlie jierson of 
Mr. .Andrew Melville, a more accomplishe(i scholar, 
as well as a more al)le and eloquent writer, than 
.\dam'»on him-;elf. He drew iq) a true statement of 
the su!)iccts propounded, and sent tliem to the for- 
eign churches by which the archbishop's design was 
fru'itrated. I!ut tlie work of mere ecclesiastical di]i- 
lomacy iloes nut seem to have been sufficient for the 
restless .•\dam>f)n, so that he was susix-ctcd of in- 
triguing with the French and S|>anish ambassadors, 
and connecting him-elf with the jilot of Throckmor- 
ton, the object of which was tlie liberation of Marv 
and the restoration of I'opery. It was a strange 
^•)erif)d of jilots and con'.])iracies, where I'roteslant, 
Pajiist, and Puritan, jiriest and layman, fireigner 
and Englisliman, were often mingled together as in 
a sctlhing and bubtiling cauldron, for tlie concoction 
of a charm by which a cure for every |)ublic evil was 
tfi be effected. It wa-, immediately on the detection 
of this Throckmorton cons])ira('y, and the ap]irelien- 
sion of its author, that the archbishop secretly with- 
drew from England and returned home, after having 
been employed fully six montl's in these and other 
such devices in London. 

While Adam'ion had thus l)ccn occui>icd in Eng- 
l.ind, the government at I'.onie had not been idle; 
and the worthless Ivarl fif .Arran, who, since the 
suppression of the Raid of Ruthven, had recovered 



the royal favour, proceeded to put his plan in execu- 
tion of silencing, imprisoning, and banishing the 
best and most disting\iished of the Scottish clergy. 
It was thus that the tlocks were to be brought to 
helplessness, and a new order of shepherds intro- 
duced. The list of the persecuted was a large one; 
but among the most illustrious of these were some 
of the most distingiushed lights of the Scottish re- 
formation, such as Andrew Melville, John Davidson, 
Walter Balcanquhal, and Janieg Lawson. Of these 
we can only particularize tlie last, as his closing 
scene was but too intimately connected with the 
history of Patrick Adamson. Lawson had been the 
friend and fellow-labourer of Knox, whom he suc- 
ceeded as minister of Edinburgh; and in this im- 
portant charge, while he was closely connected with 
all the principal ecclesiastical movements of the 
period, he was distinguished by his gentleness, self- 
denial, and piety. Put these were the very qualities 
that now marked him out as a victim; and the im- 
perious Anan did not hesitate to threaten that, 
though his head were as big as a haystack, he would 
make it fly from his shoulders. Lawson knew that 
his life was aimed at, and, like several of his brethren 
thus circumstanced, he fled to England, and took 
up his residence at London, in one of the lanes 
leading from Cheapside. Put the uncongenial cli- 
mate, and, above all, the defection of many of his 
flock during his absence, so heavily afflicted him, 
that he fell into a disease, of which he died in little 
more than a month. Upon his death-bed, the English 
who visited liim were edified with his pious remarks, 
which they carefully treasured up for their families 
and accjuaintances; and his last prayers were for mercy 
in behalf of those who would neither enter the king- 
dom of God themselves, nor suffer others to enter 
therein. And will it be believed that Patrick Adam- 
son, the man for whom in especial he had so prayed, 
conceived the idea of perverting such a death-bed 
to his own political purposes? But so it was. He 
s.at down with the pen of a ready writer, and composed 
an elaborate testament in Lawson's name, in which 
the dying man was made to abjure all his Presbyter- 
ian principles, to grieve over them as deadly sins, to 
recommend the government of the cliurch by bishops, 
and enjoin imjilicit obedience to the king's authority. 
It was indeed a bold exploit in literaiy forgery; but, 
at this jieriod and afterwards, \\hen the jien outran 
the activity of the jmtss, and communities were so 
separated, it was easy to make a fraud of this kind, 
where tlie locality was transferred to London, to pass 
current in the streets of Edinl)urgh. There is no 
doubt that thus the archbishop had calculated; but, 
like many very cunning jieople, he in this instance 
betrayed himself by his over-scrupulous dexteritv. 
Thus, not content with making Lawson recant all 
the jirinciples of his well-spent life with a hurry that 
was inconceivable, and laud ciiisco])al rule with an 
unction and earnestness which the Archbishop of 
Canterbury himself could not have surjiassed, he also 
made him, in exhorting his old co-]iresbyters, to 
vent a malignity of sentiment, and drolling bitterness 
of satire, such as, whether living or dying, Lawson 
could not and would not have used. But it fortun- 
ately happened that proof still stronger than inferen- 
tial evidence was at hand, to convict this imjiudent 
forgery; for Lawson himself had written his last 
testament, \\liich was witnessed with the honoured 
names of .Andrew Melville, James Carmichael, John 
Davidson, and Walter P.alcan(iuhal. 

After his return from I'Lngland, Adamson did not 
lie idle; he zealously joined the king and Arran in 
their ])ersecution of the best adherents of the kirk, 
under which, not only the princii;al ministers, but 



PATRICK ADAMSOX. 



19 



also the chief of the nobility, were fugitives in Eng- 
land. His pen also was soon in requisition for a 
more dignified work, at least, than that of blacken- 
ing the memory of a departed brother; it was to 
advocate, defend, anil justify certain obnoxious mea- 
sures of James and his favourite, that had passed 
through the parliament in 1584, and were generally 
unpopular, buth on account of their anti-presbyterian 
spirit in religion and their despotic tendencies in 
civil rule. This task Adamson accomplished, and 
with such plausibility and ingenuity, that his apology 
was not only in high favour with the king, but widely 
popular in England, so that it was inserted in the 
appendix of Holinshed's History as a true picture of 
the religious state of Scotland. But this was not his 
only reward. Although he was still a suspended 
presbyter, with his trial by the General Assembly 
hanging over him, and accounted a very Julian the 
Apostate by his former brethren, yet he was now to 
be confirmed in his primacy, with all the high rights 
and immunities that could be comprised within the 
otTice. This was announced by a royal letter, under 
the great seal, and, as such, was indignantly termed 
by the ministers the King's bull, "giving and grant- 
ing to his well-beloved clerk and orator, Patrick, 
Archbishop of St. Andrews, power, authority, and 
jurisdiction to exercise the same archbishopric by 
himself, his commissioners, and deputies, in all 
matters ecclesiastical, within the diocese of St. An- 
drews, and sheriffdoms which have been heretofore 
annexed thereto." In this way he would be able to 
sit as presiding moderator in that Assembly where 
he should have stood as a culprit, and to silence the 
charges which he could not answer. But this, his 
culminating point, was also that of his downfal. 
The banished lords, who had withdrawn themselves 
to England, now took counsel upon the oppressed 
state of their country, and resolved to redress it after 
the old Scottish fashion. They therefore approached 
the border, where they could communicate with 
their allies, and appoint musters of their retainers; 
and at length, all being in readiness, Angus, Mar, 
(jlammis, and the Ilamiltons entered Scotland, and 
rapidly marched to Stirling, at the head of eight 
thoiLsand armed men, to reason with their misguided 
sovereign. lie soon found himself, like many of 
his ancestors, the pupil of force and necessity, and 
was compelled to yield to their stern remonstrances; 
while Arran was again, and for the last time, ban- 
ished into that obscurity from which he should never 
have been summoned. 

The return of the exiled lords, and the banish- 
ment of Arran from court, produced a l:)reathing in- 
terval to the kirk; and the ministers who had been 
dispersed, warded, or silenced, were restored to lib- 
erty and their charges. It was now time, therefore, 
to redress the evils that had t)een inflicted upon the 
church, and these too by members of its own body, 
during tlie last two years of trial, if its polity and 
discipline were to be something more than a name. 
It was a stern duty, a* Adamscm was soon to feel. 
He h.ad laixmred for the eversion of the kirk, and 
the ]icrsecutiiin of iis ministers, under an unconstitu- 
tional authority against which he had protested and 
subscribed; and fur all this he must answer before 
the court to which the assize of such delinquencies 
pertained. Tiie symxl of St. Andrews, wliich had 
been closed tluring the persecution, was to be re- 
opened; and their first work was to be the trial of 
their own archltislio]). whom their laws recognized 
as a simple presbyter, and nothing more. This 
solemn meeting was therefore convoked in .Vpril, 
15S6. to wiiich a great concomsc assembled; and 
thither also came the archbishop, '"with a great 



pontificality and big countenance," for he Ixjasted 
that he was in his own city, and possessed of the 
king's favour, and therefore needed to fear no one. 
He also placed himself close by the ])reacher, who 
was Mr. James Melville, as if determined to outbrave 
the whole assembly. The discourse was a vindica- 
tion of the polity of the church, and a rehearsal of 
the wrongs it had suffered; and then, "coming in 
particular," .says Melville himself, "to our own Kirk 
of Scotland, I turned to the bishop, sitting at my 
elbow, and directing my sjjcech to him personally, 
I recounted to him, shortly, his life, actions, and 
proceedings against the kirk, taking the assembly 
there to witness, and his own conscience before God, 
if he was not an evident proof and example of that 
doctrine; whom, being a minister of the kirk, the 
dragon had so stung with the poison and venom of 
avarice and ambition, that, swelling exorljitantly out 
of measure, threatened the wreck and destruction of 
the whole body, unless he were timeously and with 
courage cut off." To this formidable appeal the 
archbishop endeavoured to answer, but it was oniv 
with frivolous objections and threats of the king's 
displeasure, while his courage was so utterly gone 
that he could scarcely sit, far less stand on his feet. 
But the business commenced, the process was entered 
into, and Adamson left the meeting. He was in- 
vited to return, but he sent for answer that the synod 
was no judge to him, but he to it. He not only 
persisted in refusing to appear, but sent such answers 
to the charges against him as only aggravated the 
offence. Nothing remained but to inflict upon him 
the final sentence of the church, which was done 
accordingly. 

The doom so long suspended had thus fallen at 
last; but still the primate would not yield. He ral- 
lied himself for a desperate counter-movement, and 
penned, by his own sole authority, a sentence of 
excommunication against the two Melvillesand some 
of his principal accusers in the synod, which he sent 
by a boy, accompanied by two of liis jackmen ; but 
when this most informal missive was read in the 
church, the audience were as little moved as if he had 
excommunicated the stones of the building. He 
also sent a complaint against these proceedings to 
the king, with an appeal from the authority of the 
synod, to his majesty, the estates, and the privy 
council. On tlie arrival of Sabbath, he jirepared 
for a decisive effort, by preaching in the church in 
spite of tlie sentence. But just \\hen he was about 
to ascend the pulpit, a mischievous rumour reached 
his ear, that several gentlemen and citizens had 
assembled in the new college, to take him out of 
tiie pulpit, and hang him; and, terrified at the report, 
lie not only called his friends and jackmen to the 
rescue, but fled from the church, and took refuge in 
the stee]->le. And yet the whole cause of tl;e stir 
was nothing more than tlie assembling of a few 
gentlemen and citizens in the new college, to attend 
the preaching of Andrew Melville, instead of that of 
an excommunicated man I The archbishop's friends 
f )llowed him to the stee]ile. to .assure him of has 
safety; but so desperate was his fear, that tliey c ■,■.!■! 
scarcely drag him out by force. \\ hile he \\ .> li;ii!- 
led, half-carried down the High Street, and thro,— ii 
the north gate towards his ca-;le, an unlucky -tr.iy 
hare, terrified at the coming <lin. suddenly >:.u-:i.d 
u]i, and fled before tlier.i. fiven this incident c idd 
imjiart some gravity to the >ceiie. It ^^.l~ a ].■ -j ■.;'..-ir 
belief at that time in Scotland th.at a wiu':. \vlKn 
jnirsued, usually a-.-umed the form of a !:-;c. r..i're 
eftectually to in-ure her escape; and th.e a;'] e.irance 
of the p<ic)r animal at s;;c:i a time .ml j !ace n.a':c 
the people declare th.\t it \\ as U'j etiier tl..-;;i the 



PATRICK ADAMSOX. 



prelate's witch, abandoning her master, to make 
good her own safety. 

We have already stated that Adamson appealed 
against the sentence of excommunication, to the 
authority of the king. In this singular appeal, he 
declaimed with great learning and marvellous jjlausi- 
bility about the right of royalty to interpose against 
ecclesi.istical as well as civil tyranny; and as he 
hail already made out, as he thought, his own case 
to he one of undue ecclesiastical opjiression on the 
part of his enemies, the conclusion was jilain, that 
the king could lawfully release him from the spiritual 
sentence. He wound up his reasoning with the 
following supposition, to which, he well knew, 
James would not be insensible: " IJesecching your 
m.ijesty to consider and weigh witli your highness' 
self, nobility, and council, how dangerous a thing it 
is to put such a sword in such men's hands, or to 
sutler them to usurp further than their duty; whereby 
it may come to pass, that as r.lshly and unorderly 
they have jiretendedly excommunicated the first man 
of your majesty's parliament (albeit unworthy), so 
there rests nothing of their next attempt to do the 
same to your majesty's self" The king's i)ride 
was roused at such a thought, and he arrogantly 
re<juired the ministers to rescind their sentence, 
threatening them with the deprivation of their rights 
and stipends in the event of a refusal. The General 
Assembly met in May the same year, when these 
conditions were proposed, and the members were in 
sore strait how to act, for most of the restoretl lords, 
after l>eing replacetl in their possessions, had left the 
cliurch to shift for itself At length a medium 
course was ado])ted by tlie Assembly, and that, too, 
only by a small majority. It was, that the arch- 
bishop "should be holden and repute in the same 
ca>e and condition that he was in l)efore the holding 
of the synod of St. Anilrews, witliout jirejudice, 
decerning, or judging anything of the jiroceedings, 
process, or sentence of the same synod." It was a 
strange decision, by which Adamson was allowed 
to teach, preach, and exercise his clerical functions, 
excommunicated though he still was; while the 
jmlpits, by royal decree, were not only to be jmtent 
to his entrance, but the students of St. Andrews 
were C'immanded to attend his lectures in the old 
cijjlege as heretofore. This violence, as miglit be 
expected, pro<luced counter-violence, so that lil)els 
Were thrown not only into the arclibishop's chamber, 
but the [lulpits in which he i)tTiciate<l, threatening 
him With death for his intrusion. .Xiid as if all lliis 
had n<)t l>een enough, he added to his further dis- 
quahhcations, by inability to ]>ay his dcbl^, in conse- 
quence (jf which he was, according to the practice of 
the Scottish law, denounced a rebel, ami put to the 
horn. This case was brouglu before the .'\sseinbly 
of June, 15S7, because many ])eo]ilc had demurred 
to attend his ministrations while he lai)ouied uinkr 
such fk-grading disabilities. The .Assembly, howtvcr, 
decided that these were of a civil r.ither than an 
ecclesiastical character, and referred them to the king 
for a'lju>tment. 

In the very same year and month, while .Xdamson 
was in tliis miserable i)light--an excomnuinicated 
ministfrr and an outlawc<l j-relate- the first man in 
the parliament, and yet a denounced rebel because 
he could not pay his dehls — a gleam of royal sunshine 
fell upon hini, which was destined to l)e the last. 
The celebrated I )u I'.artes v,-.ited Scotland, and 
James was desirous that the learned poet should see 
the two most accom[)lished scholars in .Scotland- - 
.•\ndrew .Melville and Patrick .Adamson. To .St. 
Andrews, accordingly, the royal ri);-A;Y repaired ; and 
thj first notice which Melville had of the visit was 



from the king himself, who bluntly told him that he 
had come with the illustrious foreigner, to have a 
lesson from him in his class-room. Melville would 
have excused himself, on the plea that he had already 
delivered his ordinary lecture in the forenoon. "That 
is all one," said the king; "I 7nust have a lesson, 
and be you here within an hour for that effect." In 
less than an hour the professor was in readiness, 
and commenced such a lecture, as made the king 
wish himself once more among the deer in Falkland. 
It was an eloquent extemporaneous oration, in which 
he vindicated Christ's right of sovereignty over his 
own church, and refuted and exposed the acts of 
parliament that had been lately enacted subversive 
of the kirk's authority. James went home in no 
very pleasant mood, and remained in a fume the 
whole evening. On the next morning it was Adam- 
son's turn, who was not likely to trespass in the 
same fashion. During the interval, he had prepared 
a "tightencd-up abridgment" of his previous year's 
lectures, in which he attempted to vindicate the 
royal supremacy in ecclesiastical affairs, and justify 
the steps that had been taken for that purpose. 
Andrew Melville, who attended as an auditor, took 
notes of the archbishop's arguments; and without 
further study, caused the college bell to be rung 
after a short interval, to announce a new lecture. 
The king, who had not yet digested the lesson of 
yesterday, sent a warning to Melville to be moderate, 
otherwise he would discharge him; to which the 
other replied, that his majesty's ear had already been 
abused by Adamson's errors and untruths, which he 
could not allow to pass unquestioned, unless his 
breath were stopped by death itself — but that still, 
he should be careful to behave himself most 
moderately and reverendly to his majesty in all 
respects. The king was satisfied with this assur- 
ance, and repaired to the class-room, where Adam- 
son was also in attendance; and he craved and ob- 
tained the royal permission to reply, should any- 
thing be alleged against his doctrine. The two 
strong champions were now standing front to front 
in the lists — and never had king of Scotland so 
delighted in the hurtling together of man and horse, 
and the shivering of spears, as did James in the pro- 
sitect of an intellectual tournament, where dexterous 
syllogisms and home-thrust arguments were the only 
blows in circulation. But here Melville changed 
his tactics, in a way that would have puzzled the most 
exiJcrienced master of fence. He had no longer a 
controversy with ]';]iisco]iacy, but with I'opery, the 
great common enemy of Protestantism at large; and 
thus secure of the symjialhy of his audience, he ex- 
tracted from the works of the Pojiish authors the 
strongest arguments they had adduced in defence of 
their system, for the purpose of refuting them. l?ut 
these arguments were the very same a\ hich Adamson 
had used in the forenoon, in favour of the s])iritual 
government of kings and bisho])sI There, however, 
tliey stood among the ranks of the uncircumcised; 
and as such, they were attacked with an amount of 
.Scripture and learning, and a force and fervour of 
eloquence, as com])letely swe]it them off the field. 
It was now the arclil)isho])'s turn to bestir himself, 
but he was dumb— dumb as the l)ench he sat upon. 
.At last, the king advanced to the rescue; and after 
making several logical distiu;^7ios, ujion which he 
harangued for some time, he ended by commanding 
the students to reverence and obey his archbishop. 
When James departed, Du Bartes stayed behind a 
whole hour, conversing with Andrew Melville, after 
which lie mounted his horse, and rejoined his 
majesty. The king wished to know the opinion of 
1 the foreigner upon the two men they had heard; to 



PATRICK ADAMSON 



SIR ANDREW AGXEW. 



which Du Bartcs replied, that they were both 
learned men, but that the prelate's lectures were 
conned and prepared, while Melville had a great and 
ready store of all kinds of learning within him; and 
that his spirit and courage were far above the other. 
In this correct estimate James completely agreed. 

From this period the life of Adamson was but a 
brief and mournful record. After his late discom- 
fiture, he became weary of teaching in the college, 
and seems to have remitted it in a great measure to 
his successful rival. The ministrations of the pulpit 
could not console him, as the audiences either avoided 
him as an excommunicated man, or tarried and 
listened as to the voice of an intruder. Fresh com- 
plaints were made against him in the church courts, 
of having collated unworthy persons to benefices 
within his diocese. And, to crown all, he finally 
lost the favour and protection of the king, whom he 
had served only too well, but who was now weary 
of an archbishop buried under debt and disgrace, 
and whose season of working seemed well nigh over. 
Broken in health as well as in spirit, it might have 
been thought that James would at least have suffered 
such a faithful servant to depart in peace; but as if 
his own ungrateful hand, and no other, ought to 
deal the final blow, he alienated from him whatever 
of the revenues of his diocese he was still permitted 
to enjoy, and bestowed them upon the young Duke 
of Lennox, the son of his early favourite. In 1591, 
Adamson was dying a heart-broken man, and unable 
to procure for himself and his family even the 
common necessaries of life. But besides hollow 
friends, he had generous enemies, and these last 
came for\vard in the hour of his extremity. Such 
especially were the two Melvilles, whom he had 
persecuted in the season of his ascendency, but who 
now supported him for several months at their own 
expense. At last, he was reduced to such miserable 
shifts, that he entreated a charitable collection to be 
made for him among the brethren in the town of St. 
Andrews; and as an inducement, he offered to repair 
to the pulpit, and there make open confession of his 
offences. This, indeed, his sickness prevented him 
from accomplishing; but he rendered an equivalent, 
in a distinct "Recantation," which he subscribed, 
and sent to the synod of St. Andrews. Besides thus 
showing how little he had cared for Episcopacy, 
and how much he had used it for his own aggrandize- 
ment, he evinced tlie force of his early and long- 
concealed convictions in favour of Presbyterianism, 
by the remorse which he now felt at the thought of 
his excommunication, and his earnestness to be 
absolved from the sentence; and to this effect he 
sent a supplication to the presbyter)' of St. Andrews. 
They deputed two of the t)rethren, one of whom was 
James Melville, to examine him, and, if they judged 
fit, to release him. As soon as the dying man saw 
Melville, he rose up in bed, plucked the night-cap 
from his head, and exclaimed, "Forgive, forgive 
me, f)r God's sake, good Mr. James, for I have 
offended and done wrong to you many wavs!" 
Melville spoke to him of hi:; sin against Christ and 
his church, exhorted him to repentance, with the 
assurance of mercy from God if he repented, and 
forgave him with all his heart. His excommunica- 
tion was then spoken of, and he was asked if he 
acknowledged its lawfulness. To this his emphatic 
reply, which he repeated again and again, was, 
"Loose me, fir Christ's sake I" His state and 
petition were fully reported to the presbyter\-, and 
he was fortliwith absolved. Even yet, as appears 
from his "Recantation." he had hoped to struggle 
through this his last illness; and he jirofessed in it 
his earnest desire and purpose to commence a better 



life, and repair the evils he had inflicted upon 
religion and the church. But his new-born sincerity 
was not to be thus tried, and he died in the lowest 
depths of his humiliation and repentance. His 
character is thus strongly and briefly summed up by 
James Melville, who knew him well, and witnessed 
his career from its height to its mournful termina- 
tion: — "This man had many great gifts, but espe- 
cially excelled in the tongue and pen; and yet, for 
abusing of the same against Christ, all use of both 
the one and the other was taken from him, when fie 
was in greatest miser>' and had most need of them. In 
the latter end of his life, his nearest friends were no 
comfort to him, and his supposed greatest enemies, 
to whom indeed he offered greatest occasion of 
enmity, were his only friends, and recompensed 
good for evil, especially my uncle Andrew, but 
found small tokens of any spiritual comf(jrt in him, 
which chiefly he would have wished to have seen at 
his end. Thus God delivered his kirk of a most 
dangerous enemy, who, if he had been endowed with 
a common civil piece of honesty in his dealing and 
conversation, he had more means to have wrought 
mischief in a kirk or country', than any I have known 
or heard of in our island." 

As will be surmised from the foregoing account, 
Patrick Adamson was both an able and a voluminous 
writer; but most of his productions were merely 
written for the day, and have passed away with the 
occasions in which they originated. Some of them 
he never purposed to acknowledge, while others 
remained unpublished in manuscript. Most of these 
he confessed and regretted in his "Recantation," 
declaring, that if it should please God to restore his 
health, he would change his style, "as Cajetanus 
did at the Council of Trent." His principal v.ritings 
were collected and published, in one quarto volume, 
by Thomas Volusenus (Wilson) in 1619; but not- 
withstanding their undoubted excellence, it may be 
questioned if they are now at all known beyond the 
library of the antiquary-. It appears that on be- 
coming minister of Paisley, Adamson married the 
daughter of a lawyer, who survived him, and by 
whom he had a family; but all record of them has 
passed away, so that he may be said to have been 
the last, as he was the first, of his race. The precise 
date of his death has not been mentioned; but it was 
in the latter part of the year 1 59 1. Such was the 
career and end of the great antagonist and rival of 
Andrew Melville. 

AGNEW, Sir Andrew, of Lochnaw, Br.rt., 
Lieutenant-General. The family of Agnew lays 
claim, and probably with justice, to a more illustrious 
antiquity than most of our Scottish noble houses. 
The Agnews entered Scotland in the reign of 
David II., where they acquired the lands of Lochnaw, 
and were invested with the offices of heritable con- 
stables and sheriffs of Wigtonshire. 

The subject of the present memoir, and fifth 
baronet of Lochnaw, was bom in 16S7. and \\ as the 
eldest son of a family of twenty-one children. This 
was a tndy patriarchal numl)cr; but he lived nln-iost 
to equal it, being himself ultimately the father il 
seventeen sons and daughters by one mother. t!ie 
daughter of Agnew of Creoch. Sir Andrew cm- 
braced the militan,- profession at an early jer:'"!. ns 
many of his family had dor.e, and wa> ."ii .i::;cer in 
the great Marlborough campaigns, as we tii^u li.ni a 
cornet in the second regiment ot dragoons it ."^cots 
Greys at the battle of Ramilics. when he !;.n'l ju^t 
reached his nineteenth year. It w.i< in tliis c.iiac.ty. 
and under such training, that besii'.es being .1 -'Kiltul 
and successful otnccr, he became ii;st;ng'.;oI".ed 1 y 



SIR ANDREW AGNEW. 



those deeds of personal daring, as well as eccentric 
peculiarities of manner, that long made him a 
favourite in the fireside legends of the Scottish 
peasantry. Among these, we are told, that on one 
occasion having been appointed to superintend the 
interment of the slain after one of the continental 
engagements, his ortlerly came to him in great per- 
plexity, saying, "Sir, there is a heap of fellows 
lying yonder, who say they are only wounded, and 
won^t consent to be burietl like the rest: what shall 
1 tlo?" "liup.- them at once," cried Sir Andrew, 
"for if you take their own word for it, they won't 
be deail for a hundred years to come 1 " The man, 
who understood nothing beyond tiie word of com- 
mand, made his military salaam and went off with 
full purpose to execute the order to the letter, wiien 
he was checked by a counter-order from his superior, 
who perhaps little thought that his joke wouhl have 
been carried so far. On another occasion, when an 
engagement was about to commence, he jiointed to 
the enemy, and thus briefly an<l ]Mthily addressed his 
soldiers: "Weel, lads, ye see tliese loons on the hill 
there: if ye dinna kill them, tliey'll kill you." 

When the battle of Dettingen took jiiace, which 
occurred in 1743, where George II. commanded tlie 
British troops in person. Sir Amirew Agnew hekl 
the rank of lieutenant-colonel, and was appointed to 
keep a pass at the outskirts of the British army, 
through which an attack of the French was ajipre- 
heniied. ( )n this post of danger the kniglit of 
I.ochnaw stationed himself with his regiment of 
.Scots Fusileers as coolly as if he hail been upon the 
boundary of one of his own f\rms in Wigtonshire. 
One day, while at dinner, he was informed that 
there were symptoms of a coming attack — that the 
enemy's cavalry were mustering at no great distance. 
"The loons I" cried .Sir .\ndrew indignantly; "surely 
they will never hae the impudence to attack the 
Scots Fusileers!" and f)rthwith ordered his men to 
finish their dinner quietly, assuring them that they 
would fight all the better for it. He ccmtinued 
eating and encouraging his officers to follow his 
example, until the enemy were so nigh, that a 
shiit struck from his hand a bone which he was in 
the act of picking. "They are in earnest now !" he 
cried, and drew up his men to receive the enemy, 
who came on at full charge. They were a jxHtion 
of the royal hnusehold troops, the |)icked and best- 
disciplinc<l soldiers of France, mounted U]:)on heavy 
and p')werful horses, and armed with cuirasses that 
were buckled close to the saildie, so that the jioint 
of a bavfinct could not easily fmd entrance vvitiiin 
their steel panoply. .Sir .\ndrew, who knew that it 
W.XS u>clc^s to abide such an avalanche of man and 
horse, ordered his soldiers not to fiie until they saw 
the whites of their enemy's eyes, to take aim only at 
their hor>cs, and open their ranks as soon as a charge 
was made ujion ihem. This skilful manonivre 
succeeded as he had f )reseen — the French horses were 
brought down in he.Ti)s, their riders easily bayonetted, 
and the far-famed hou^ehoM troojjs were driven back 
with heavy lo>.-;. After the battle, ( ieorge II. ob- 
served, "Well, Sir .\ndrew, I hear that your regi- 
ment was broken; that you let the Fn-ncli cavalry 
in u]ion you." "N'es, ]>lea-e your majesty." replied 
the gallant humouri-,!, "but they didna gang back 
ag.aiii." 

The most imjiortant military service, however, in 
which .Sir .Vndrew .Xgnew was engaged, w.is the 
defence of Blair ('a>tle against the troc)iis of ijie I're- 
tender, during the insurrection of 1745 6. ( )n the 
arrival of the Duke of ( 'umberland in I'erth, to take 
the command of the royalist army, he found it 
necessary to occui)y and garrison Blair Ca.^tle, the 



seat of the Duke of Athol, then absent, for the 
purpose of suppressing the disaffected of the district, 
and cutting off the communications of the rebels by 
the great roads between the southern and northern 
parts of the country. For this service Sir Andrew 
was selected, and despatched thither with a detach- 
ment of three hundred soldiers. Not only was no 
siege expected, but the place was ill fitted to sustain 
one; for it was scantily supj^lied with provisiors, 
and had no artillery or military stores, while the 
soldiers had only nineteen rounds of ammunition per 
man. Of all this the rebels seem to have been 
apprised, and accordingly, on the morning of the 
17th of March, 1746, Lord George Murray (the 
Pretender's lieutenant-general). Lord Naime, Mac- 
pherson of Clunie, and other Jacobite leaders, re- 
solved to recover the castle, and open their com- 
munications. They came, therefore, in great force, 
captured the detached parties that were without the 
castle, and suddenly aj^peared before the fort itself, 
while such a visit was neither expected nor desired. 
Most commanders in such a situation would have 
abandoned the .""ort as untenable; but Sir Andrew 
had not thus learned his military lessons under the 
great Marlborough: he resolved to defend it to the 
last, notwithstanding its impoverished condition, and 
thus give time for the collection of those forces by 
which the insurrection was soon after extinguished at 
Culloden. He therefore issued strict orders to his 
garrison, now reduced to 270 men, to save their 
ammunition with the utmost care; and, as there 
were no provisions in the castle but some bread and 
cheese, he commanded these to be dealt out in small 
daily rations. 

As the obtaining of Blair Castle was of the 
utmost importance to the rebels, Lord George 
Murray, their ablest commander, commenced the 
siege in due form. He began by a summons to 
surrender; and knowing the old knight's fiery temper, 
he wrote to him to this effect, not upon decent 
foolscaj), but a ])iece of shabby gray paper. But 
who was to enter the lion's den, and beard him with 
such a missive? No Highlander could be found to 
undertake the task, so that it was intru.sted to a 
comely young servant maid of Blair Inn, who had 
found favour in the eyes of Sir Andrew's young 
officers while they resorted there, and who thought 
that they would not allow her to be harmed. She 
a])]iroached the garrison, taking care to avoid being 
shot by waving the ])a]ier over her head like a flag 
of truce. When she delivered her credentials, she 
earnestly entreated the officers to surrender, assuring 
them that the Highlanders were a thousand strong, 
an<l would di>ii:; the castle about their ears; Init this 
friendly warning they t)nly received with peals of 
laughter, telling her that they would soon set these 
Highlanders a scam]iering, and visit her at the inn 
as before. No one, however, would deliver the 
summons to .Sir .\ndrew, exce])t a timid lieutenant 
of the company, whose nerves were further unstrung 
by the use of strong waters; but no sooner did the 
old knight hear the first sentence read, than he burst 
forth into such a storm of wrath, and uttered such 
fearful threats of shooting the next messenger through 
the head who dared to jiropose a surrender, that the 
lieutenant look to his heels, while Molly, who stood 
at the bottom of the stairs, and heard the whole, fled 
across tile fields like a startled hare. She told her 
eni]>loyers, waiting in the churchyard (jf ISlair, the 
roiilt of luT mission, who laughed heartily at the 
rage of Sir .Amlrew. .Still further to jirovoke him, 
and ])erha])s tempt him to a rash sally, they threw 
large stones at the \\alls, accom])anie<l with biting 
jokes at his ex[)ense; but fieiy though his temper 



SIR ANDREW AGNEW 



SAINT AIDAN. 



23 



was, and impatient of ridicule, he was too wary a 
soldier to afford them such an advantage. In the 
meantime, the more serious work of the siege went 
on with vigour, and, though the walls of Blair Castle 
were of great thickness, the assailants not only used 
common, hut also hot shot, in the hope of setting the 
building on fire. The wood, being luckily not very 
combust ii)le, only smouldered as it received the balls. 
Hut the chief confidence of the rebels was to star\-e 
tlie garrison out, knowing how scantily it was sup- 
plieil; and for this purpose they strictly blockaded 
the place, while their best marksmen were ordered 
to keep u]) a close fire wherever a man showed him- 
self. This last incident suggested to the officers of 
the castle a practical joke at the expense of their 
commantler, whom they loved, feared, and laughed 
at when they dared. They got one of his old 
uniforms ; and having stuffed it with straw and 
furnished the figure with a spy-glass, they placed it 
at a small turret window, where it looked like no 
other than Sir Andrew himself reconnoitring the 
enemy below. The rifles q( the assailants were all 
brought to bear upon it, and the best marksmen of 
the Highlands continued to riddle this deceptive 
wisp, until .Sir Andrew himself, wondering why this 
point should have been selected for such a hot attack, 
ascended the turret, and there he saw this other 
identity standing under fire, as stiff, fearless, and 
imperturbable as himself! He was in a towering 
rage at the irreverent joke, and resolved that the 
l)erpetrat()r should not escape a share of it. The 
wag was ordered to go to this spot so full of risk, 
and carry the pupjiet away, Sir Andrew gruffly pro- 
nouncing this retributive sentence: "Let the loon 
that set it up, just gang up himsel' and tak' it down 
again." 

Beyond all military calculation, Sir Andrew 
.Vgnew, with miserably scanty means, had made 
good his position from the 17th of March to the end 
of the month. Longer than this, however, it was 
impossible to hold out, as the provisions of the 
garrison were exhausted, so that nothing seemed to 
l)e left them but a desperate sally, or immediate 
surrender. A faint chance indeed tliere might be 
of some messenger stealing through the leaguer, and 
carrying tidings of their condition to the Earl of 
Crawford, who was then at Dunkeld with a strong 
force of Hessians. This was now attempted, and 
the gardener of Blair Castle undertook to be the 
messenger. The gate was opened without noise; he 
stole out unperceived, mounted a horse, and rode 
cautiously down the avenue to the highway; but 
immediately a firing and pursuit commenced, and, 
on tlie following day, a Highlander was seen mounted 
on the gardener's horse, so that the garrison thought 
he must have been either killed or taken. On tlie 
1st of .Xjiril, however, they were startled by an un- 
expected mes>enger; this was no other than Molly 
of the inn, formerly the envoy of the rebels, who 
now came with the joyful intelligence that they had 
broken up their encampment, and gone away to 
D.ilnacardoch. Sir .\ndrew, who was not only 
wary but short-sighted, would not tnist the news', 
and abode a (Lay longer in his hunger-bitten hold, 
when an officer arrived from the Earl of Crawford, 
to say that his lordshi]i himself was on the road with 
his cavalry, and would arrive within an hour. Such 
was the case; for the gardener's horse, being alarmed 
at the firing, had thrown him, and been capturetl by 
the Iligldanders, so that he had made his journey to 
Dunkeld on foot. Wlien Crawford arrived. Sir 
Andrew drew up his soldiers to receive him, and 
thus addressed the o.arl: •'My lord, I am verv glad 
to see you; but, by all tliat's good, you have been 



very dilatorj-; we can give you nothing to eat." 
The earl laughed good humouredly, and invited Sir 
Andrew and his officers to dine with him — an invita- 
tion that was never more welcome, jK'rhaj.s, than at 
the present crisis. The summer-house in the garden 
was immediately turned into a dining-room, the table 
was plentifully covered with substantial dishes and 
excellent wines, and the lialf-starved and doomed 
defenders of Blair Castle were translated, as if bv 
magic, into the regions of safety, hilarity, and good 
cheer. 

After the siege was thus raised, .Sir Andrew 
Agnew's gallant defence was not forgot. He and 
his soldiers were publicly thanked by the Duke of 
Cumberland, and soon afterwards he was promoted 
to a colonelcy of marines. In 1747, in ccmsequence 
of the abolition of the many old feudal offices in 
Scotland, his hereditary sheriffdom of Wigtcjnshire 
was among the number; but he received ^,^4000 as 
a compensation from government. In 1750 he was 
appointed governor of Tinmouth Castle, in room of 
the Duke of Somerset. He died, with the rank of 
lieutenant-general, in 1771, at the age of eighty-four, 
and was succeeded by his fifth son, .Sir Stair Agnew, 
who was bom October 9, 1734. His father, who at 
that period was absent on foreign ser\'ice, found at 
his return the infant nestled in the maternal bosom. 
"What's this ye hae got, Nelly?" he asked, as this 
was the first intelligence he had of the event. 
"Another son to you, Sir Andrew," she answered. 
"And what do you call this boy?" "I have called 
him Stair, after the earl, your commander." "Stair, 
Sir Stair," repeated the knight, whistling the sibilant 
sounds through his teeth — "Sir .Stair, .Sir Deevil I 
It disna clink weel, Nelly." The sounds, however, 
were at last united, whether they clinked or not, for 
the child, by the death of his elder brothers, ulti- 
mately succeeded to the baronetcy of Lochnaw. 

AIDAN, S.MNT, Bishop of Lindisfame in the 
seventh century, was originally a monk in the island 
of lona, and afterwards became a missionary in 
England. The causes that brought Aidan to England 
were the following: — Oswald having recovered the 
kingdom of Northumbria from its pagan op]:)ressors, 
by a signal and surprising victor}-, his piety attributed 
this success to the aid of the tnie God, whom he had 
invoked; and the first movement of his reign was to 
arrest the growing heathenism of his people, and 
recall them to the Christian faith. For this jmrpose 
he applied, however, not to the Italian monks, as 
his uncle had done, but to the Culdees of lona; 
among whom he had been sheltered in his early 
youth, during the disasters of his family, and by 
whom he had been carefully educated. The mes>age 
was gladly received liy the Culdee brethren, and 
Corman, a learned monk of their order, was forth- 
with sent to Northumbria. But the savage manners 
of the people appalled him, their inability to compre- 
hend his instnictions disgu>ted him, so that, despair- 
ing of their conversion, he speedily relurne<l home. 
While he was giving an account of his mission, and 
describing the N'orthumbrians as a race ot imiM-acti- 
cable savages, a voice of rebuke \\"as suddenly lio.ir 1 
in the assembly: "Brother, it seems to nie iluit y^ur 
want of success w.is owing to a \\ant <>t c<in'ie~>;i-;;- 
sion to your hearers. \'ou sliould tir-t ha\e tc'i 
them with milk, according to the apo-t'i'.ic rule, 
until they were fitted to receive stronger f' '-:. -\d 
eves were turned ujion the speaker, wiio wa- Avian. 
It was unanimously .agreed by ihc a~-ciii: '.>' ti.at .'.e 
was the fittest ju-r.-on to attempt the c -r.vcrsi' ■!! ot 
the Northumbrians, aivi, on tlic c!'.ar:,'f "! c:ng pro- 
posctl to him, he cordially agreed. He arrived in 



24 



S AIN'T AIDAN 



England A.D. 634, and repaired to the court of king 
Oswald. And now a missionary work commenced 
in the Northumbrian kingdom such as missionary 
annals can seldom parallel, for both king and monk 
went hand in hand in the duty. Aidan, being a 
Celt, was either wholly ignorant of the Saxon 
language of his hearers or imperfectly acquainted 
•with it; but, when he preached, Oswald was ready 
to inteqiret his aildresses. The happiest results at- 
tended these joint labours. The ancient idolatry 
was utterly thrown aside, and Christianity established 
over Deira and Hernicia. Still further to confirm 
this change, Aidan prevailed upon the king to trans- 
fer the episcopal see from York to Lindisfarnc, or 
Holy Island, a bleak peninsula upon the coast of 
Northumberland, which probably the Culdee pre- 
ferred from its resemblance to his own beloved lona, 
and here accordingly a monastery was erected, 
which Aidan supplied with monks from his own 
count r)-. 

After the death of Oswald, who was slain in battle, 
the kingdom of Northumbria was once more parted 
into two sovereignties, those of Deira and Bernicia; in 
the former of which Oswin was appointed king, and 
in the latter Oswiu. It was, however, a peaceful 
conjunction; and Aidan still continued, as before, 
to preside over the church of Northumberland. The 
character ol Oswin appears to have fully resembled 
that of his amiable jiredecessor, and the Bishop of 
I-indisfarne seems to have loved him with a still 
higher atTcction than even that which he bore for 
Oswald. Amidst the obscurity of that remote period, 
and the shadowy character of its actors, Bede tells 
us a touching stor\', in which the simple manners of 
the times, as well as the intercourse between the 
king and the bishop, are brought out in strong relief. 
Oswin had once presented to Aidan a fine horse. It 
hap]iened that one day, as the Culdee was riding 
forth, he met a poor man who asked of him an alms, 
and .\idan, having no money, bestowed on him the 
horse and its rich trappings. The king on hearing 
of this was displeased, and could not refrain from 
expressing his resentment when Aidan next dined 
with him. "Why were you so lavish of my favour," 
he said, "as to give away my jiad to a beggar? If 
you must needs mount him on horseback, could you 
not have given him one of less value? Or, if he 
wanted any other relief, you might have supplied 
him otherwise, and not have parted so easily with 
my gift." "\'ou have not carefully considered this 
matter," replied .\iilan, "for otherwise you could 
not set a greater value on the son of a mare, than 
on a son of (i-. i." In tliis way the affair ended f<;r 
the present. .Not long after, when the king returned 
fp.m hunting, he saw tlie bislio]!, and, remembering 
what had lately occurred, lie laid a-ide his sword, 
threw himself at llie g...)'! u\:u\\ feet, and asked 
his forgiveness for the rude words he had uttered. 
.•\idan. grieve<l to see the king in this jiosture, im- 
mediately rai>e'l him, and declared that tlie whole 
matter was forgot. .Xft^r this interview, however, 
Aidan was observed to be very sad; and, on bein" 
asked the cause by ^oine of his iiionk>, he' burst into 
tears, ami replied. "How can I be (itlurwise than 
afllicted? I f)resec that Oswin's life will be short, 
for never have I beheld a jirinee so hunible. His 
tem[H-r is too heavenly to dwell long among us, and, 
truly, the nation does not deserve the blessing of such 
a ruler." This mournful jireiiiction was soon after 
accomplished by the death of ( )s\vin, who was assas. 
sinated in .August, 651 : and ,\idan took the matter 
s ) deeply to heart, tliat he died a fortnight after. 

Such is the little that we know of .Saint Aidan, 
the apostle of Northumberland and BishoiJ of Lindis- 



WILLIAM AIRMAN. 

fame. That he was great and good, and that he 
accomplished much, is evident from the old chroni- 
cles, and especially from the history of venerable 
Bede, from whom the foregoing brief account has 
been chiefly gathered. 

AIRMAN, WiLLi.vM, a painter of considerable 
merit of tiie last century, was bom in Aberdeen- 
shire, October 24, 1682. His father was William 
Aikman of Cairney, a man of eminence at the 
Scottish bar, who educated his son to follow his own 
profession. But a predilection for the fine arts, and 
a love of poetr)', which gained him the friendship of 
Ramsay and Thomson, induced the youth to give 
up studying for the law, and turn his attention to 
painting. Having prosecuted his studies in paint- 
ing for a time at home under Sir John Medina, and 
also in England, he resolved to visit Italy, that he 
might complete his education as an artist, and form 
his taste by an examination of the classic models of 
antiquity; and accordingly, in 1707, having sold his 
paternal estate near Arbroath, that he might leave 
home untram.nelled, he went to Rome, where, 
during a period of three years, he put himself under 
the tuition of the best masters. He afterwards 
visited Constantinople and Smyrna, where the 
gentlemen of the English factory wished him to 
engage in the Turkey trade; an overture which he 
declined; and returning to Rome, he there renewed 
his studies for a time. In 1712 he revisited his 
native country, and commenced practising his pro- 
fession; but though his works were admired by the 
discerning few, he did not meet with adequate en- 
couragement, the public being too poor at that time 
to purchase elaborate works of art, and the taste for 
such works being then too imperfectly formed. At 
this period he formed an intimacy with Allan Ram- 
say, whose portrait he afterwards painted. John, 
Duke of Argyle, who equally admired the artist and 
esteemed the man, regretting that such talents should 
be lost, at length prevailed upon Aikman, in 1 723, 
to move with all his family to London. There, 
under the auspices of his distinguished friend, he as- 
sociated with the most eminent British painters of 
the age, particularly Sir Godfrey Kneller, whose 
studies and dis]30sitions of mind were congenial 
with his own. The duke also recommended him to 
many people of the first rank, particularly the ICarl 
of Burlington, so well known for his taste in archi- 
tecture; and he was thus able to be of much service 
to Thomson, who came to London soon after him- 
self, as a literary adventurer. He introduced the 
jxjet of T/w Seasons to the brilliant literary circle 
of the day — Pope, Swift, Cay, Arbuthnot, cVc. — and, 
what was perhaps of more immediate service, to Sir 
Roljert Walpole, who aimed at being thought a friend 
to men of genius. Among the more intimate friends 
of Aikman was William Somervillc, author of 'J'/te 
C/iasc, from whom he received an elegant tribute of 
the muse, on his painting a full-length portrait of 
the poet in the decline of life, carrying him back, by 
the assistance of another jiortrait, to his youtliful 
<lays. This ])oem was never published in any edition 
of .Somerville's works. Aikman painted, for the Earl 
of liurlington, a large ]ncture of the royal family of 
Lngland; all the younger branches being in the 
middle comiiartnient, on a very large canvas, and on 
one hand a full-length portrait of f^)ueen Caroline; 
the i)icture of ilie king (George H.)— that king who 
ne\er could endure "boetry or bainting," as he 
styled the Xwu arts in his broken English — intended 
for the ojiposite side, was never finished, owing to 
the death of the artist. This was perhaps the last 
[licture brought towards a close by Aikman, and it 



HEW AIXSLIE 



WILLIAM AITON. 



is allowed to have been in his best style; it came 
into the ])ossession of the Duke of Devonshire by a 
marriage alliance with the Burlington family. Some 
of his earlier works are in the possession of the 
Argyle and Hamilton families in Scotland; his more 
mature and mellow productions are chiefly to be 
found in England, and a large portion at Blickling, 
in Norfolk, the seat of the Earl of Buckinghamshire; 
these are chiefly portraits of noblemen, ladies, and 
gentlemen, friends of the earl. lie died, June 4, 
1 73 1, at his house in Leicester Fields, and, by his 
own desire, his body was taken to Scotland for in- 
terment; his only son, John (by his wife Marion 
Lawson, daughter of Mr. Lawson of Cairnmuir, in 
Peeblesshire), whose death immediately preceded his 
own, was buried in the same grave with him, in the 
Greyfriars' Churchyard, Edinburgh. A monument 
was erected over the remains of Mr. Aikman, with 
the following epitaph by Mallet, which has been 
long since obliterated: — 

" Dear to the good and wise, dispraised by none, 
Here sleep in peace the father and the son. 
Ky virtue as by nature close allied, 
The painter's genius, but without the pride. 
Worth unambitious, wit afraid to shine. 
Honour's clear light, and friendship's warmth divine. 
The son, fair-rising, knew too short a date; 
But O how more severe the parent's fate! 
He saw him torn untimely from his side. 
Felt all a father's anguish — wept, and died." 

In his Style of painting Aikman seems to have 
aimed at imitating nature in her most simple forms; 
his lights are soft, his shades mellow, and his colour- 
ing mild and harmonious. His touch has neither 
the force nor the harshness of Rubens; nor does he, 
like Reynolds, adorn his jiortraits with the elegance 
of adventitious graces. His compositions are dis- 
tinguished by a placid tranquillity, rather than a 
striking brilliancy of effect; and his portraits maybe 
more readily mistaken for those of Kneller than for 
the works of any other eminent artist. 

AINSLIE, Hew. Tliis poet, whose songs in 
the Scottish dialect have obtained considerable popu- 
larity, was born April 5th, 1792, at Bargeny Mains, 
in the parish, of Dailly, Ayrshire. He was first 
educated by a private tutor at home, afterwards at 
the parish school of Ballantrae, and finally at the 
academy of Ayr. On leaving tlie academy, he 
became assistant landscape ganlener on the estate 
of Sir Hew Dalrymple Hamilton, a situation which 
he afterwards exchanged at the age of sixteen for 
that of a lawyer's clerk in Glasgow; but the confine- 
ment of the office being injurious to his health, he 
removed to Roslin, and subsequently obtained a 
clerkship in the Register Office, Edinburgh. 

Like most of the tuneful class. Hew Ainslie was 
a poet from his early years, and had composed verses 
before he left his native Carrick. The practice was 
not neglected when his age was more matured, and 
in consequence of a visit to Ayrshire in 1820, his 
poetical ardour hurst forth into authorship under the 
title of ,•/ r.'I^-rima^r to the Land of Burns. The 
volume thus entitled was a duodecimo of 271 pages, 
printeil at Deinford, "for the author," in 1S22, and 
amidst jokes, stories, and descriptions connected 
with the history of our gre.at Scottish bard, it was 
more plentifully interspersed with Ainslie's own 
poetry, which his narrative seems mainly intended 
to introduce. This mixture of prose and verse 
makes a very lively and readable book, and as such 
the /V/^vv'w.j^v brougiu the author int(3 considerable 
notice. 

In the meantime .Mnslie had married, had f n;nd 
the salary of his clerkshiii in the Rc;^;ster House 



too small to maintain his family, and had moreover 
discovered that he was not likely to be enriched by 
cultivating poetry as a regular occupation. He 
wisely therefore resolved to emigrate to the I'nited 
States, where the field was open to industrious en- 
terprise, and where his chances were better both for 
health and pros|)erity. He accordingly arrived at 
New York in 1822, purchased a farm,' and settled 
on it for three years. Still haunted h<nvever by 
the restless eccentricity and love of change that 
characterizes poets, he joined the Socialists of New 
Harmony, under their leader Robert Owen; but 
after a year's experience he renounced the system, 
and set up as a brewer first at Louisville, and after- 
wards at New Albany. But his premises having 
been destroyed by accident, he changed his occupa- 
tion to that of the erection of mills and factories, 
and finally settled in Jersey, a suburb of New York. 
Thus far we have been enabled to trace the course 
of Hew Ainslie in America, and until 1855, '" 
which he published a volume of Scottish Son:^s, 
Ballads, and Poems, at New York; but after this 
period our information deserts us, so that we neither 
know how he prospered in his old age, nor in what 
year he died. That he had never ceased, hc)wever, 
to cultivate poetry as his first love, or to remember 
Scotland with a fdial devotedness, his last jiublica- 
tion is a satisfactory proof. Their Scottish raciness 
is as complete as if he still trode his native heather, 
instead of having been a sojourner for more than 
thirty years in America. Their merit also is so far 
above mediocrity, that they will be remembered and 
cherished in Scotland long after the history of their 
author is forgot. 

AITON, WiLLi.VM, an eminent horticulturist and 
botanist, was born, in 1 73 1, at a village in the 
neighbourhood of Hamilton. Having been regtdarly 
bred to the profession of a gardener, as it was and 
still is practised by numbers of his countr\men, with 
a union of manual skill and scientific knowledge, he 
removed to England in 1754, and, in the year fol- 
lowing, obtained the notice of the celebrated Philip 
Miller, then superintendent of the physic garden at 
Chelsea, who employed him for some time as an 
assistant. The instructions which he received from 
that eminent gardener laid the foundation, it is said, 
of his future fortune. His industry and abilities were 
so conspicuous, that, in 1759, he was pointed out 
to the rrincess-dowager of Wales as a fit person to 
manage the botanical garden at Kew. His profes- 
sional talents also procured him the notice of .^ir 
Joseph Banks, and a friendship commenced w]ii(.!i 
subsisted between them for life. Dr. Solander ai.d 
Dr. Dryander were also among the number of b.is 
friends. The encouragement of botanical studies 
was a distinguished feature of the reign of GeC'igc 
III., who, soon after his accession, determined i" 
render Kew a repository of all the vegetable riclu-s 
of the world. Specimens were accordin,,'!}' ] r^curcd 
from every cpiarter of the glol.)e, ami jilaccd ur.ikr 
the care of Mr. Aiton, who showed a -uri-ri-iii:; 
degree of skill in their arrangemem. I mkr !i:- 
superintendence a variety of inqn-ovenur.ts ti^^k 
place in the ]")ian and edifices of Kcw t nU'lci;-. tiil 
they attained an undoubted eminence over every I'Jier 
botanical institution. In 17S3, on a vac.uxy recur- 
ring in tiie superintendence of the jilea-ure-g.'.iiier.s r.t 
Kew, Mr. Aiton received the aji; > ':i;;r..U'.i tn^m 
George HI., but was, at the same time. | (.rniiiteil 
to retain his more inqiortai.t ntncc. Il.s i.il'Murs 
]iroved that the king's tavours were r.i ■: \'.\ be-towed; 
l"'ir, in 17S0. he j ubr.shcd an el.ib ■::■.:<: descrip- 
tion of the plants at Kew, under 'iic l.ik- II:rtus 



26 



ALEXANDER ALES ■ 



WILLIAM ALEXANDER. 



A'^wi'Hsis, 3 vols. Svo, with a number of plates. In 
this production Mr. Aiton gave an account of no 
fewer than 5600 foreign plants, which had been intro- 
duced from time to time into the English gardens; 
and so highly was the work esteemed, that the whole 
impression was sold within two years. A second 
and improved edition was published by his son, 
William Townseiul Aiton, in 1810. After a life of 
singular activity and usefulness, ilistinguishcd more- 
over by all the domestic virtues, Mr. Aiton died on 
the 1st of Fel)niary, 1793. of a schirrus in the liver, 
in the sixty-tinrd year of his age. lie lies burieil in 
the churchyard at Kew, near the graves of his distin- 
gui>he<l friends, ZolTany, Meyer, and (Gainsborough. 
He was succeeded by his son, Mr. William Town- 
send .Mton. who was no less esteemed by George 
III. than his father hail been, and who for fifty 
years ably superintendeil the botanical department 
at Kew, besides taking charge of the e.xtensive 
plexsure-groumls, and being employed in the im- 
l)rovcment o{ the other royal gardens. In 1841 he 
rctiretl from office, when .Sir William J. Hooker 
was api^ointetl director of the botanic gardens. Mr. 
Aiton died at Kew in 1S49, aged eighty- four. 

ALES, or ALESSE, Ale.xanpf.r, a celebrated 
the'>logian of the sixteenth century, was born at 
Edinburgh, April 23, 15CXJ. He is first found in the 
situation of a canon in the cathedral of St. Andrews, 
where he di>tinguished himself by entering into the 
prevalent controversy of the day against Luther. 
His zeal for the Roman Catliolic religion was stag- 
gered by the martyrdom of Patrick Hamilton; but 
it i> not iimhalile that his doubts would have been 
carried further, if he had not suffered persecution for 
the slight degree of scepticism already manifested. 
iJeing obliged to lice from St. Andrews, he retired 
to (jerniany, where he became a thorough convert 
to the rrotestant doctrines. The reformation in 
England induced .Ales to go to London, in 1535, 
where he was highly esteemed by Cianmer, Latimer, 
.and Crmnwell, wIkj were at that time in favour 
with the king. Henry regarded him als(j with 
fav(nir. and use<l to call him "'his scholar."' Upon 
the fall of Croinweli, he was oljjiged to return to 
(Jermany. where the I'lector (jf lirandeninirg ap- 
pointed him professor of divinity at l''rankfort-u])on- 
the-Oder, in 1540. As a reformer Ales did not 
always maintain tiie most ortiiodox doctrines; hence 
he was ohhgcd, in 1542, to tlee from his chair at 
l-'rankfort, and betake himself to Leipsic. He s]5ent 
the remainder of hi^ life in that city, as iirofessor of 
divinity, and clied in 1565. His works are:— I. 
Dc- .Wrfisitiitf it Mcntt.^ Iioiii<ritm Opcrtim, Dispiitalio 
J'r^>/\>jitii ni Ci!il>ri Anidcinui lyipsicij. ad 2() A ('7'. 
15S0. 2. C'jinmrnl.ini iii l:i\ui.-diu»i Jotuiuis, ct in 
!ttriiini/:ic- /-.//-A'A/w ./(/ 'fniuitlhum. 3. l-.xf'ositio in 
/';,:/w<'j D.r.id:!. 4. Dc Jn lifnatioii,; loiilra Os- 
cjudrum ^. Pi- San, la Trniitat,; mm Con/iita/ioii,' 
Error ii I'.ii, tifiiii. (1. J\,:poinu> ad Iri-iii/a d duo; 
Artiiulo! 'J'hoolo-orutn J.cTaiiiinsiiiiii. The fifth in 
this I:-.t is the mo^t favourable sjieciinen of his 
al).litie^. 

ALEXANDER, Wii.i.iam, an eminent noble. 
man, st:U'>ni.'in, n-id ]ioet of the reign of |ame^ \'l. 
and riiarle-. I. The original rank of thi> ]ur-onnge 
was that of a small landed proprietor or laivd; but lie 
was elevated, by dint of hi^ various accoiniilisjirneiit-, 
and through the favour of the two sovereiL'ii^ al)ove- 
mentioned, to the rank of an eaii. His fainilv, 
which pf)s^cssed the small estate of Meiistrie, near 
Stirling, is said to have derivecl the name Alexander 
from tlie prenomen oi their ancestor, Alexander 



Macdonald, a Highlander who had been settled in 
this property by the Ivarl of Argyle, whose resi- 
lience of Castle Campbell is in the neighbourhood. 
William Alexander is supposed to have first seen the 
light in 15S0. He received from his friends the best 
education which the time and place could afford, and 
at a very early age he accompanied the young Earl 
of Argyle u])on his foreign travels, in the capacity 
of tutor. Previous to this period, when only fifteen 
years of age, he had been smitten with the charms 
of some country beauty, "the cynosure of neighbour- 
ing eyes;" on his return from the Continent he wrote 
no fewer than a hundred sonnets, as a ventilation to 
the fervours of his breast; but all his poetry was 
in vain, so far as the lady was concerned. She 
thought of matrimony, while he thought of love, and 
accordingly, on being solicited by a more aged 
suitor, in other respects eligible, she did not scniple 
to accept his hand. The poet took a more sensible 
way of consoling himself for this disappointment 
than might have been expected; he married another 
lady, the daughter and heiress of Sir William Erskine. 
His century of sonnets was published in London in 
1604, under the title of Aurora, cotitaifiifig the 
First Fancies of the Author's Youth, by W. Alex- 
ander, of Menstrie. He had early been introduced 
to royal notice; and when James removed to London, 
in 1603, the poet did not remain long behind, but 
soon became a dependant upon the English court. 
In this situation, however, he did not, like most 
court poets of that age, ernploy his pen in the adula- 
tion of majesty; his works breathe a very different 
strain: he descanted on the vanity of grandeur, the 
value of truth, the abuse of power, and the burden 
of riches; and his moralizings assumed the strange 
shape of tragedies — compositions not at all designed 
for the stage, but intended to embody his sentiments 
u]ion such subjects as those we have mentioned. 
His first tragedy was grounded upon the story of 
Darius, and ajipeared at Edinburgh in 1603. He 
afterwards republished it at London, in 1607, along 
with similar compositions upon the stories of Alex- 
ander, Croesus, and Ca'sar, under the title of ]\Io7i- 
archick 7'ragcdies, by William Alexander, gentleman 
of the Princes' Privy Chamber. It woukl thus ap- 
])ear that he had now obtained a jilace in the house- 
liold of Prince Henry; to whom he had previously 
addressed a poem or para'iiesis, designed to show 
how the happiness of a sovereign depends upon his 
choice of worthy councillors. This poem, of which 
no copy of the original edition is known to exist, 
except one in the university library at Edinburgh, 
was, after the death of Henry, addressed to Prince 
Charles, who then became heir-ai)parent; an economy 
in poetical, not to speak of court business which 
cannot be sufficiently admired. He was, in 1613, 
a])pointed one of the gentlemen ushers of the 
presence to this unfortunate prince. 

King James is said to have been a warm admirer 
of the poems of Alexander, to have honoured him 
with his conversation, and called him "my ])hilo- 
soijliical jioet." He was now aspiring to the still 
more honourable character of a divine poet, for 
ill 1614, appeared at lulinburgh his largest and 
]ierha])s his most meritorious ])roduction, entitled 
Doomsday, or the Great Day of jud^inent, which has 
been several times reprinted. 

Hithert(j the career of Alexander had been chiefly 
that of a ])oet: it was henceforth entirely that of a 
courtier. In 1614 he was knighted by King James, 
ami ap])ointed to the situation of master of recpiests. 
In 1621 the king gave him a grant by his royal deed 
of tile ])rovince of Nova .Scotia, which as yet had 
not been colonized. Alexander designed at first to 



WILLIAM ALEXANDER. 



27 



establish settlers upon this new country, and as an 
inducement to the jjurchase of land, it was proposed 
that the king should confer upon all who paid a 
hundred and fifty pounds for 6000 acres the honour 
of a kniglu baronetcy. Owing to the perplexed 
l)olitics of the last years of King James, he did not 
get this scheme carried into effect, but Charles had 
no sooner acceded than he resolved upon giving 
it his sujiport. Alexander, in 1625, published a 
pampldet, entitled An Encoura:^c?ni:nt to Colonics, 
the object of which was to state the progress already 
made, to recommend the scheme to the nation, and 
to invite adventurers. It is also supposed tliat he 
ha'l a hand in A Brief Kclation of the Discoz'ery and 
Plantation of Xe'M EnglanJ, and of sundry accidents 
therein occurring from the year 1607 to this present 
1622: together with the state thereof as it now stand- 
eth, the general form of Government intended, and 
the division of the whole territory into Counties, Bar- 
onies, Sec. King Charles, who probably considered 
the scheme in a twofold light, as a means of establish- 
ing a new colony, and of remunerating an old 
servant at the expense of others, conferred upon Sir 
William .-Mexander the rank of Lieutenant of 'Sew 
Scotland, and founded the necessary order of knights 
baronets of the same territory. The numl^cr of 
these baronets was not to exceed a hundred and 
fifty, and it was ordained that the title should be 
hereditary — that they should take precedence of 
all ordinary kniglits and lairds, and of all other 
gentlemen, except .Sir William Alexander, and 
that they should have place in all his majesty's and 
his successors' armies, near and about the royal 
standard for the defence thereof, with other honour- 
able distinctions of precedency, to them, their wives, 
and heirs. The ceremony of infeftment or seasine 
was decreed to take place on the Castle-hill of Edin- 
burgh, the earth and stone of which were held, by 
a fiction, to represent the component particles of 
certain baronies and lordships on the other side of 
the Atlantic. But the Nova Scotian scheme, what- 
ever might have been originally contemplated, de- 
generated at last into a mere means of raising money 
by the sale of titles; a system too much practised in 
the English reign of James VI., and which gained, 
as it deserved, the contempt of all honourable minds. 
The territory of Xova Scotia afterwards fell into the 
hands of the French, who affected to believe that 
they had acquired a right to it liy a treaty entered 
into with the king of Great Britain, in 1632, in 
which the country of Acadia was ceded to them. In 
the treaty of peace transacted between the two 
countries, in 1763, it was successfully asserted by 
the Briti-,h g(jvernment that Xova .Scotia was 
tinally distinct from .Vcadia, and accordingly the 
territory reverted to Britain, along with Canada. 
The country, however, having become the propertv 
of otlier individu.als during the usurpation of the 
French, it ajipears that the Xova Scotia baronets 
have very >li-ht prospects of ever regaining the lands 
to which iliL'ir titles were originally attached. 

In 162O Sir William .VIex.ander w.as, by the favour 
of Charle> I., made secret.ary of state for Scotland, 
a:i oftice to which the salary of ;^iOO a year, being 
tiiat of a g.>o(l mercantile clerk in the present day, 
was then .lUached. In 1630, by the further favour 
of his s()verci:,'n, he was raided to the peerage under 
the title of \'iscount Stirling; and in 1633, at the 
coronation of King diaries in Holyrood Cha]-iel, he 
was promoted to the rank of an earl under the same 
title. He held the office of secretary during fifteen 
years, and gained the credit of being a moderate 
statesman in the mid.-t of many violent political 
scenes. It duos not appear, however, that he was a 



popular character. Such esteem as he might have 
gained by his poetry seems to have lx;en lost in con- 
sequence of his arts to become rich. .\ jx*rmission 
which he acquired, probably in his character of lieu- 
tenant of Xovia .Scotia, to coin base money, W-came 
a grievance to the community, and procured him 
much obloquy. He had erected a splendid mansion 
at Stirling out of his ill-acquired gains, and affixed 
upon its front his annorial bearings, with the motto 
"Per mare, per terras." This was panKlied, as we 
are informed, by the sarcastic Scott of .Scotstar\et, 
into "Per metre, per turners," in allusion to the 
sources of his wealth, the peoj)le believing that the 
royal favour had a reference to his lordship's poetr)-, 
while turners, or black fart/tini^s, as they were other- 
wise called, had been one of the shapes in which this 
favour was expressed. The house still remains a 
monument of the taste of the poet. 

The Earl of .Stirling in 1637 jniblished a complete 
edition of his poetical works, under the general title 
of Recreations with the A/nses. The work contained 
his four "Monarchick Tragedies," his "Doomsday," 
the "Para;nesis to Prince Henr}-," and "Jonathan, 
an Heroick Poem Intended, the first book," the 
whole revised and very much imjiroved by the 
author. He died in 1640, leaving three sons and 
two daughters, whose posterity was supposed to 
have been completely extinct, till a claimant appeared 
in 1830, as descended from one of the younger 
branches of the family, and who assumed the titles 
of .Stirling and Devon. Considered as a ]ioet, 
.■\lexander is entitled to considerable praise. "Ilis 
style is certainly neither pure nor correct, which may 
perhaps be attributed to his long familiarity with the 
Scottish language; but his versification is in general 
much superior to that of his contemporaries, and 
approaches nearer to the elegance of modern times 
than could have been expected from one who wrote 
so much. There are innumerable beauties scattered 
over the whole of his works, but particularly in his 
songs and sonnets; the former are a species of 
irregular odes, in which the sentiment, occasionally 
partaking of the quaintness of his age, is more 
frequently new and forcibly expressed. The powers 
of mind displayed in his 'Doomsday' and 'Para-nesis' 
are very considerable, although we are frequently 
able to trace the allusions and imager.- to the language 
of holy writ; and he appears to have l)een less in- 
spired by the sublimity than by the awful importance 
of his subject to rational beings. A habit of moral- 
izing pervades all his writings; but in the 'Doomsday' 
he appears deeply impressed with his sul)ject, and 
more anxious to persuade the heart than to de- 
light the imagination.'' — Johnson and Chalmers' 
En:::lish Poets, edit. iSio, vol. v. 

The Earl of Stirling was employed in his latter 
years in the task of revising the version of the 
Psalms jirejiared by King James, \\liich (Uity w as im- 
posed upon him by the royal iiaraphra>t liimsclf. In 
a letter to his friend Dnimmond of Hawthorr.uen, 
28th of .April, 1620, Alexander says, '•Bn.tlKr. 
I received your last letter, with the ]i>ahn vdu >cnt, 
which I think verv- well done: I had done tb.c -r.n-.c 
long before it came; but he [King Janus] prefer- !.i- 
own to all else; though, perchance when ymi -ee :!, 
you will think it //.v r.vr.V of ti:e ti.roo. X'> irnn 
must meddle with that suliject, and tl'.er^N-ye I 
a<lvise you to take no more pain> there'.n.. In 
consideration of the j^ains wliich the e.irl l;.-.d 
bestowed ujion this subject, Ch.ir'.e- I.. < n ihe 
28th of December, 1627. grante^I a lic'. :>e i > b;- 
lord--hip to print the late ki!iL;'> \e:-;tK' ■ t 'f.o 
Psalms CNchi~ive!y fir thiriy-di^e )''.ir~. I he t:r-t 
edition a; reared 'at Oxf-'il in 1031. Ti.e kirg 



2S 



ALEXANDER I. 



ALEXANDER IIL 



endeavoured to enforce the use of his father's 
version alone throughout his dominions; and, if lie 
had been successful, the privilege would have been 
a source of immense proht to the Earl of Stirling. 
l?ut the royal wishes were resisted by the Scottish 
church, and were not ver)' respectfully obeyed any- 
where else; and the breaking out of the civil war 
soon after rendered the privilege entirely useless.' 

ALEXANDER I., sumamed J,rr or the /vmv, 
King of Scots from i io6 to 1 124, was the fifth son of 
>Lircolm IIL by his wife .Margaret of England. 
Lord Hailes conjectures that his name was bestowed 
in honour of Pope Alexander II.; a circumstance 
worthy of attention, as it was the means of introduc- 
ing the most common ami familiar Christian name 
in Scotland. The date of .Alexander's birth is not 
known; but as his four elder brothers were all 
under age in 1093, at the death of their father, he 
must have been in the bloom of life at his accession 
to the throne. He succeeded his brother Edgar, 
Januar)' 8, 1106-7, ^^^^ immediately after married 
Sybilla, the natural daughter of Henry I. of England, 
who h.id married his sister Matilda or Maud. Such 
an alliance was not then considered dishonourable. 
Alexander was active in enforcing obedience to his 
rale, and in suppressing the i)ands of rebels or 
robbers with which the northern parts of the king- 
dom were infested; but the chief events of his reign 
relate to the efforts made by the English church to 
assert a sui)remacy over that of Scotland. These 
efforts were resisted by the King of Scots with steady 
perseverance and ultimate success, although the ]iope 
countenanced the claims of the English prelates. 
It is to be presumed that this spirit would have in- 
cited the Scottish monarch to maintain the indejiend- 
ency of his kingdom had it ever been called in 
question during his reign. Alexander died, April 27, 
1124. after a reign of seventeen years and three 
months. As he left no is--ue, he was succeeiled Iiy 
Ills next and last surviving brother David, so memor- 
able for his bounty to the church. Alexander was 
also a jiious monarch. AMred, in his genealogy of 
the English kings, says of him that "he was humble 
and courteous to the clergy, but, to the rest of his 
subjects, terrible beyond measure; high-spirited, 
always emleavouring to compass tilings beyond his 
power; not ignorant of letters; zealous in establishing 
churches, ollecting relics, and jiroviding vestments 
and b'ciks for the clergy; liberal even to ]-)rofusion, 
and taking delight in the offices of charity to the 
poor." His donations to tlie church were very con- 
siderable. He made a large grant of lands to the 
church of St. .Andrews, increased tlie revenue of the 
monastery of Dunfermline which his ])arents had 
f nm'led, est.iblislied a colony of canons regular at 
home, and built a monastery on Lulicolm in the 
Firth of Forth, in gratitude fir having been jue- 
served from a tempest on that isl.\nd. 

ALEXANDER IL. the only legitimate son of 
King William, surnamed the /.i>ii, was born in 
H9H. He succeeded his father, I )ecember 4. 1214. 
in his seventeenth year, and was crowneii next day at 
Scone. Alexander H. is characteri/ed by I'ordun as 
a i>ious, just, and brave king -as the shield of the 
church, the safeguard of the peoj.le, and the friend 
of the miserable. He espoused the cause of the 
English barons against King John, whidi led to 
mutual depredations between the two sovereigns; l)ut 

' Vhr- cori.<ic of th-! K.irl of SlirlinK w;is licposit'ifl in :i Ifj.itlcn 
coffin in the family aisle in the chiir. li of Stirling;. al«vL- 
gr.un'l. an'l rcm.iincri entire fir up'.v ir-Ji of a huiidrcl ycir^. 
— I'nrasrapk Jrom an oLl ncwsp^ip^r. 



on the accession of Henry HL to the crown of 
England, peace was restored; and in 1221 the 
friendly intercourse of the two nations was estab- 
lished by the marriage of the King of Scotland to 
Joan, eldest sister of the King of England. This 
princess died in 1238 without issue; and in the 
following year Alexander married Mary de Couci, 
the scion of a French house, which, in its motto, 
disclaimed royally, and rested for distinction on its 
own merits: 

Je suis ni roi, ni prince aussi — 
Je suis le seigneur de Couci. 

During the life of Joan the British monarchs came 
to no open rupture, their friendly intimacy being 
only occasionally interrupted by Henry discovering 
a disposition to revive the claim of homage from the 
King of Scotland, which had been given up by 
Richard L, and by Alexander insisting on his claim 
to the three northern counties of England; but 
shortly after the death of Joan national jealousies 
broke out, and in 1244 both princes raised armies 
and prepared fo.' war. By the mediation, however, 
of several English barons, hostilities were prevented, 
and a peace concluded. Much of Alexander's reign 
was occupied in suppressing insurrections of the 
Celtic inhabitants of Scotland. He died, A.D. 1249, 
in one of the islands of the Hebrides while engaged 
in subjecting Angus, the Lord of Argyle, who re- 
fused his homage to the Scottish sovereign. He 
left by his second wife one son, who is the subject 
of the following article. 

ALEXAISTDER III., born at Roxburgh, Sep- 
tember 4, 1241, succeeded his father in the eighth 
year of his age. He was knighted and crowned 
only five days after his father's death — a precipita- 
tion adopted to prevent the interference of the King 
of England. AVhen only a year old Alexander had 
been betrothed to Margaret, eldest daughter of 
Henry IIL, a princess of his own age; and in 1251 
their nuptials were celebrated at York with great 
pomp. On the ground of this union Henry inter- 
ested himself in the afifairs of Scotland, and the young 
prince was a frequent visitor at the court of his father- 
in-law. The English monarch, taking advantage of 
Alexander's youth and other circumstances, endea- 
voured to prevail upon him to do homage for his 
crown and kingdom of Scotland; Init the young 
king, with a fortitude and prudence beyond his 
years, and which gave promise of his future decision, 
resisted the demand, saying that he could not treat 
of affairs f)f state without the advice of his ])arlia- 
ment. During Alexander's minority the country was 
divided into factions, and various struggles for ascend- 
ancy took j^lace; but the administration was latterly 
committed to fifteen of the leading chiefs or barons. 
Alexander had reached the twenty-second year of his 
age when his kingdom was invaded by one of the 
most formidable armaments that had ever sailed from 
Norway. I laco, king of that country, with a fleet of 
one hundred and sixty ships, freighted with many 
thousand northern warriors, who carried terror to 
almost all the shin-es of Europe, sailed towards 
Scotland in the summer of 1263, and after making 
himself master of the Islands of Arran and Bute, 
arrived in the Bay of Largs, near the mouth of the 
Clyde, and endeavoured to effect a landing. Here 
a Scottish army, under Alexander, assembled to re- 
sist the invasion; and here, on the 2d of (J)ctober, 
after a furee and bloody contest, the Norwegians 
were re]iulsed with great loss. A storm arising com- 
jileted the dissijiation or destruction of their fleet. 
Ilaco escaped with difficulty through the strait 



ARCHIBALD ALISON. 



29 



between Skye and the mainland, since called Kyle 
Hacken, and reaching the Orkneys, died there, as 
is said, of a broken heart. By this defeat all the 
islands of the western sea, including that of Man, 
but excepting those of Orkney and Shetland, sub- 
mitted to Alexander. 

From this period to the death of Alexander, Scot- 
land enjoyed tranquillity, only disturbed by the pre- 
tensions of the pope and the encroachments of the 
clergy, both of which Alexander was successful in 
resisting. Religious crusades were at this time the 
rage over Europe, and Scotland did not escape the 
infection, as many of her bravest barons perished in 
Palestine. In 1274 Alexander attended the corona- 
tion of his brother-in-law, Edward I., at West- 
minster, and after the custom of the times did 
homage for the lands which he held of him in 
England. Six months after this, Margaret, (^ueen 
of Scotland, died, leaving one daughter and two 
sons— Margaret, Alexander, and David. David 
died unmarried in 128 1. NIargaret was married in 
1282 to Eric, King of Norway, and died in the 
following year, after giving birth to an infant 
daughter, who received her own name. Alexander 
was married in 1283 to the daughter of Guy, Plarl of 
Flanders, who died in the following year without 
issue. Thus, in the course of a few years, was the 
unhappy King of .Scotland deprived of his wife and 
all his children — the only remaining descendant of his 
body being the Maiden of Nor\vay, as she is called 
in Scottish history — an infant grandchild residing in 
a foreign land. In 1285 .-Mexander, to provide 
against the evils of a disputed succession, at the 
request of his nobility, married Joletta, daughter of 
the Count de Dreux; but shortly after his marriage, 
in riding along a precipitous road, between Burnt- 
island and Kinghorn, his horse fell over a rock, and 
the unfortunate monarch was killed. This event 
took place on the i6th of March, 1286, in the forty- 
fifth year of his age, and thirty-seventh of his reign. 

With Alexander III. terminated a race of kings, 
who, from the accession of Malcolm Cean-Mohr or 
Canmore, had distinguished themselves by their ac- 
tivity in the administration of justice, and their courage 
in maintaining the rights and independence of their 
country against a powerful, and too often an insidious, 
foe. Few annals of a rude people, indeed, can present 
a more remarkable series of patriotic monarclis than 
those with whom Scotland was blessed from the 
middle of the eleventh to the close of the thirteenth 
centur\-, whether we consider their wisdom and im- 
partiality as legislators, their prudence as politicians, 
or their bravery as warriors; for Malcolm the 
Maiden, and the terms upon which William the 
Lion effected his release from captivity, must only be 
considered as exceptions to tlie general excellence 
of their conduct. But with the death of Alexander 
III. the peace and prosperity of the country was 
broken up; and much as he was lamented by the 
people, and gloomy as were their forel)odings on his 
decease, no anticipation could exceed the real calami- 
ties in which the country was involved by his unhappy 
and untimely end. 

ALISON. Rkv. .\RCi1n5.\1.n, M..\.. I.L.B. This 
distinguished writer on "Taste," was born in Edin- 
burgh, .\.n. 1757, and was the son of Mr. Andrew 
AliM)n, one of the m.igistrates of that citv. When 
he had completed the Usual course of an elementar)- 
classical education, he w.-is sent, at the age of fifteen, 
to tlie university of dlasgow, where, after the usual 
curriculum of Latin, Creek, and Logic, he attended 
the lectures of Professor Reid, at tliat time in high 
met.iphysical reputation, and fonneJ an intiniacv 



with Dugald Stewart, which continued to the end 
of his life. Having been so fortunate as to obtain 
one of those exhibitions to Baliol College of which 
the university of Glasgow possesses the patronage, 
Archibald Alison removed to Oxford, where he 
completed his course of study, and took the degree 
of A.M., and afterwards of LL.B. In 1784 he 
also took orders, and married the eldest daughter <T 
the celebrated Dr. John Gregory of Ediidnirgh. 
His first appointment in the church was to the curacy 
of Brancepath, in the county of Durham. After 
this, he was appointed to the chapelrj- of Kenley in 
Shropshire in 1790, and to the vicarage of Ercall in 
the same county in 1794, by the Earl of Darlington, 
to whom the patronage of both livings belonged; 
and in 1797 he was presented to Roddington by the 
lord-chancellor. In 1791 also, the small prebend 
of Yatminster Secunda, in the cathedral of Saiisbun*-, 
was conferred upon him by Bishop Douglas, .^o 
many pluralities have an Imposing appearance; but 
their aggregate revenue amounted to nothing more 
than ;^8oo per annum. Circumstances soon led to 
Alison's removal to his native city, having been in- 
vited by Sir William Forbes and the vestry of the 
Episcopal chapel in the Cowgate of Edinburgh, to 
become senior minister of that charge. I le removed 
to Edinburgh in 1800, and continued to preach in 
the Cowgate, until the congregation removed from 
that murky locality to the handsome chapel of .'^t. 
Paul's, in York Place. In 1831 .-Mison, now an 
old man, and subject to severe attacks of pectoral 
disease, was obliged to desist from his public 
labours, and confine himself to the private society 
of his friends, in which the evening of his days was 
tranquil and happy. The high reputation whieh he 
had attained both as a preacher and writer, and h!s 
amiable personal qualities, endeared him to the most 
distinguished literary characters for which Edinburgh 
was now at the height of its fame; and he was in 
constant intercourse, among others, with Dugald 
Stewart, Dr. Gregory, Lord Woodhouselee, Pro- 
fessor Playfair, Dr. Thomas Brown, Sir James Hall, 
and Thomas Campbell. Besides these, he had been 
in familiar acquaintanceship with the illustrious of 
the end of the last centuiy, such as L)r. Adam 
Smith, Dr. Adam Ferguson, Dr. Robertson, and Dr. 
Blair. He \\as indeed the literary Nestor of the 
day, who chronicled the remembrances of the great 
and good of a past generation for the instniction ci 
their successors. Another congenial spirit, thouj^h 
in a different walk of intellect, whose society he 
especially valued, was Mr. Telford, the celebrated 
engineer; and it was pleasing to witness the zc.l 
of the veneral;le pair, while Telfortl unfolded Iiis 
scientific j^lans for the improvement of their nnti\e 
.'^cotland and its fair capital. The death of .Xrthi- 
bald Alison occurred in 1839, at the age of eiL^lity- 
two. By his wife, who died in 1S30, he had s!x 
children, of whom three survived him, and oi-,e "I 
them, Sir Archil)al<l .Alison, is kr.nwn to most of m'.r 
readers as the autlior of the Il.sicry cf Ii.urc^c j'j\rn 
tJw Frcjuh RcvolKtioi. 

Of the Rev. Archibald Alison's life .-1? an .'.r.th. r 
it is now necessary to sjx-ak. His 7:s:<!_'s i 'V .'-.i' 
Xalinr and J^rinci/hs of 'J'tistc, the work I'V \vli cli 
he is best known, was publislied s.t early as i7',o. 
l)ut attracted little notice. Not di>coura,-eii 1 } tie 
cold reception of a suliiect which had 1. rnicd ;!.■.,■ 
chief study of his !i(V. Alis-n. after he \\:A hetr f r 
some years settled in lM;riiur.;!i, rti i::.i -h.td li:s 
Essays \s\\\\ consideral ^le addit'ici.s in iSll. He 
had nciw ^^. in f.ir hinv-elf a more iavcv.raMe c..~'-s 1 t 
readers; and he was su fnrtr.nate .is :■> t::M a ei:l' '_;.-t 
iu Francis Jc!'frey. then the Ar;^:.;rd:u. of ciit.cs. 



3° 



DAVID ALLAN. 



and through the Edinburi^h Rcvi\~v, at that time the 
paramount oracle of the literar}' world. A very 
]X)\verrul and beautiful article forthwith appeared in 
that periodical upon the lontj-neglecled work; and 
the consLMjuence w.is that the JCssitys immediately 
took their place as the stantlard of the Xiitutr aiui 
Principlis of TasU. The jiresent generation can 
well remember how their boyhooil and youth were 
familiarized with it, and how the pulpit and the 
press did hom.ige to its authority. liut time has 
sobered down thisenlhu>iasm, anil Alison is reckoned 
neither to liave invented a new theory (for its lead- 
ing idea ha'.l l)een distinctly announced by David 
Hume); nor to have sifted it with the most philoso- 
phical analysis, or expressed it in the happiest 
language. But who shall arrest our fleeting emotions 
produced by the sublime and the beautiful, and 
reiluce them to such a fixctl standard as all shall 
recognize? Longinus, Hiirke, Schlegel, and Alison 
have all successively passed away, while the science 
of a-sthetics is still accumulating its materials for 
future theirists and fresh legislation. The theory 
of taste, like that of tiie weather or the tides, is still 
the subiect of hypothesis and conjecture. Besides 
his principal work of /ijsiiys oit Y'dsU, which has 
gone through many editions, both in Britain and 
Americ.i, as well as bi.'en translated into French, 
Mr. .Mi^on publiNhed two volumes of sermons, 
which have aKo been several times republished; and 
a "Memoir of Lord Woodhouslee," inserted in the 
TraitSiictwns of the Kdinbur:;h Koyal Society, i8l8. 
The character of Alison, which is thus given by his 
son, was borne out through a long and well-spent 
life: — "No m.an who held firm and uncompromising 
opinions on the principles of religion and morals, 
lo(jked with more indulgence (jn the failings of 
other-i, or p.assed through the world in more ]5erfect 
charity and good-will to all men. No man who 
had lived much in society, could retire with more 
sincere pk-a^ure at all periods of his life into domestic 
privacy, and into the >olitude of the country. . . . 
No man who had attained a higii reputation as a 
preacher or an author, was ever more absolutely in- 
different to p!>pular a])])lause, as compared with the 
con^.ci<)Uine^3 of the performance of duty." 

ALLAN, David, a painter of great merit, was 
b>rn at .\llo.i, February Ijtii, 1744. lie v.as 
the s^)n of Mr. David .v'llaii, >liore-master at that 
small port. The mother of .Mian, who>e maiden 
name wa-, (iullan, brought him prematurely into 
the world, and died a tew days after his birth.' The 
young ]jainter had so small a mouth that no innse 
could be fiuni in tiie place fitted to give him suck: 
at length, nne being heard of, wlm lived at the dis- 
tance i.f "-une mile-, he wa. ]i:uked uji in a lia.ket 
amidst CMttori. aii<l -ent o!f under the charge of a 
man who tarried him on horseback, the journey 
being rendered additionally dangemu. by a deep 
s;i')W. Tlie hor>e ha]i]iened to slund)le,' the man 
fell off. and the tiny b.ilvj wa. ej<-cted from the 
basket into the snow, receiving as lie fell a severe 
cait u[>on his head. Such were tlie cireuinsianecs 
under wh;cli Mr. J)avid Allan 1. onmieiued existence. 
Lven after h.iving experienced tiie tender cires (,f 
his nurse, mi^firtune continued to harass him. In 
the autumn of 1745, wlien he inu-t have been about 
eighteen months old, a battery was ereeted at .Mloa, 
to defend the jiass.ige of the ionh against the arinv 
of I'rincc Ldiarles. While the men were tiring the 
cannon f)r experinieiit, the maid intrusted with the 
charge of young .Mian ran across the o]K;n s]iace in 
fr mt. at the moment when they were dischar'cd, 
and he only escaped death by a ha:r-breadth. 



His genius for designing was first developed by 
accident. 15eing conhned at home with a burned 
foot, his father one day said to him, "You idle little 
rogue, you are kejit from school doing nothing! 
conie, here is a bit of chalk, draw something with it 
u])on the floor." He took the chalk, and began to 
delineate figures of houses, animals, and other fami- 
liar objects; in all of which he succeeded so well 
that the chalk was seldom afterwards out of his hand. 
When he was about ten years of age, his pedagogue 
happeneil to e.xercise his authority over some of 
the boys in a rather ludicrous manner: Allan im- 
mediately drew a caricature of the transaction upon 
a slate, and handed it about for the amusement of 
his companions. The master of the ferule, an old 
vain conceited person, who used to strut about the 
school dressed in a tartan night-cap and long tartan 
gown, got hold of the picture, and right soon de- 
tected that he himself was the most conspicuous and 
the most ridiculous figure. The satire was so keen, 
and the laugh which it excited sunk so deep, that 
the object of it was not satisfied till he had made a 
complaint to old Allan, and had the boy taken from 
his school. When cpiestioned by his father how he 
had the effrontery to insult his master, by represent- 
ing him so ridiculously on his slate, his answer was, 
"1 only made it like him, and it was all for fun !" 

The father observed the decided genius of his son, 
and had the good sense to offer it no resistance. At 
this tiirie the establishment of the Messrs. I'^oulis' aca- 
demy of arts at Glasgow was making some noise in 
the countiy. Allan, therefore, resolved to appren- 
tice his son to those gentlemen upon the terms given 
out in their prospectus of the institution. On the 
25th of February, 1755, when exactly eleven years 
of age, the young draughtsman was bound appren- 
tice to the ]\Iessrs. Foulis for seven years, to attend 
their painting academy in the university of Glasgow. 
In Newhall House there is a sketch in oil, done by 
him, representing the inside of the academy, with an 
exact portrait of Robert Foulis in the act of criticiz- 
ing a large picture, and giving instructions to his 
l^rincipal painter about it. 

In the year 1764 some of his performances at- 
tracted the notice of Lord Cathcart, whose seat, 
Shaw Park, was situated in Clackmannanshire near 
Allt)a. Lady Cathcart introduced him to the notice 
of Lady I'' ranees Lrskine, daughter of the insurgent 
l'!arl of Mar, and mother of the gentleman to whom 
the ]ieerage was restored in 1824; as also to I.ad_\- 
Charlotte Lrskine, to Mrs. Al;ercroml)y of Tulli- 
body, mother of Sir Ralph; and to some other person- 
ages of distinction in the neighbourhood of his birth- 
jilace. By the associated jnirses of these kiiul 
patrons, Allan was enabled to go to Italy, where he 
studied w ith unremitting application for eleven years. 
During his lesidence there. Lady Cathcart used to 
\uite to him with all the care and affection of a 
mother. In 1773, while living at Rome, he gained 
the ]irize medal given by the academy of .St. Luke 
for the best sjiecimen of historical com|)osili()ri ; 
bring the only .Scotchinan who had ever reached 
that IioiK.ur, besides Mr. (iavin Hamilton. 

-Xfler his return in 1 777, Allan resided for about 
two years in London; but, falling into a bad state 
of health, he ^\■as <.)rdered home to .Scotland for a 
< hange (jf air. Soon after Ids arrival in iMlinburgh, 
hewa.s ap]iointed successor to Runciman (deceased), 
as master and director of the academy established by 
the Board of Trustees for Manufactures and Iiri- 
|iroveuieiits, for ihe ])ur])ose of diffusing a knowledge 
of the ]irinciples of the fine arts and elegance of 
design, ill the various manufactures and works which 
re'iuired to be figured and ornamented; a charge for 



DAVID ALLAN — 

which he was peculiarly well qualified, by the exten- 
sive knowledge he possessed of every branch of the 
art. He retained the situation till his death. 

Allan was much admired for his talents in compo- 
sition, the truth with which he delineated nature, and 
the characteristic humour which distinguished his 
jiictures, drawings, and etchings. There are several 
engravings from his pictures, as, "The Origin of 
Painting, or the Corinthian Maid Drawing the 
Shadow of her Lover," and four in aquatinta by 
I'aul Sandby, from drawings made by Allan when 
at Rome, representing the sports during the carnival. 
.Several of the figures were portraits of persons well 
known to the English who visited Rome between 
1770 and 1780. There is one caricature by Allan, 
which is well known to Scottish collectors : it repre- 
sents the interior of a church or meeting-house at 
Dunfermline, at the moment when an imprudent 
couple are rebuked by the clergyman.. There is a 
drollery about the whole of this performance that 
never fails to amuse. The alliance of his genius to 
that of our national poets, led Allan, in 1788, to 
publish an edition of the Gentle Shepherd, with char- 
acteristic drawings. He also published a collection 
of the most humorous of the old Scottish songs, 
each illustrated by a characteristic etching. At his 
death, which happened on the 6th of August, 1796, 
he left a series of drawings designed for the poems 
of Burns in an efjually graphic and humorous style. 
There is one property which runs through all the 
designs of .\llan, and by which his productions may 
be distinguished at the most casual glance: this is a 
peculiar elegance of form which he always gives to 
the limbs of his figures — elegance to such a degree, 
that in many cases it may be pronounced out of 
nature. 

Allan, by his wife, whom he married in 1788, left 
one son, bearing his own name, and who was sent 
out as a cadet to India, and one daughter named 
Barbara. In jierson, our .Scottish Hogarth, as he 
was called, hacl nothing attractive. The misfortunes 
attending his entrance into the world were such as 
nothing in after-life could repair. "His figure was 
a bad resemblance of his humorous precursor of 
the English metropolis. He was under the middle 
size; of a slender, feeble make, with a long, sharp, 
lean, white, coarse face, much pitted by the small- 
pox, and fair hair. His large prominent eyes, 
(jf a light colour, were weak, near-sighted, and not 
very animated. His nose was long an<l high, his 
mouth wide, and both ill-shaped. His whole ex- 
terior to strangers appeared unengaging, trifling, 
and mean; and his deportment was timid and obse- 
(juious. The prejudices naturally excited by these 
(lisadvantages at introduction, were however dis- 
pelled on acquaintance; and, as he liecame easy and 
pleased, gradually yielded to agreealile sensations; 
till they insensibly vanished, and at last, were not 
only overlooked, but, from the effect of contrast, 
even heightened the attractions by which they were 
so unexpectedly followed. When in company he 
esteemed, and which suited his t.aste, as restraint 
wore off, liiseye imperceptibly became active, biiglu, 
and penetrating; his manner and .address ipiick, lively, 
and intere-ling— always kind, polite, and respectful; 
his conversati'in open and gay. humorous without 
satire, and jihiyfully replete with benevolence, ob- 
servation, and ancc'iote."' — ]h\yii'n's edition of the 
Gentle Shepherd, iSoS. 

The author who thus f )rcibly delineates his ex- 
ternal appear.Tnce, gives the following character of 
his genius: — "As a painter, at least in his own 
country, he neither excelled in drawing, composition, 
colouring, nor etfect. Like Hogarth, too, beauty, 



GEORGE ALLAN. 



3» 



grace, and grandeur of individual outline and form, 
or of style, constitute no part of his merit. He was 
no Corregio, Raphael, or Michael .Vngelo. He 
painted portraits as well as Hogarth, belf)W the 
middle size; but they are void of all charms of ele- 
gance, and of the claro-obscuro, and are recom- 
mended by nothing but a strong homely resemblance. 
As an artist and a man of genius, his characteristic 
talent lay in expression, in the imitation of nature 
with truth and humour, especially in the representa- 
tion of ludicrous scenes in low life. His eye w.as 
ever on the watch for ever)- eccentric figure, every 
motley group, or ridiculous incident, out of which 
his pencil or his needle could draw innocent enter- 
tainment and mirth." 

ALLAN, George. This poet and professional 
litterateur, whose life unfortunately was too brief to 
develope into full maturity the high promise which his 
early efforts had given, was the youngest son of J(jhn 
Allan, farmer at I'aradykes, near Edinburgh. Hav- 
ing adopted the law for his future profession, he be- 
came ajiprentice to a writer to the signet; but either 
growing weary of dry legal studies, or finding greater 
attractions in literature, he abandoned the vocation 
almost as soon as he had added W.S. to his name, 
and went to London for the purpose of pursuing an 
adventurous career as an author. There he soon 
obtained the acquaintance of Allan Cunningham, and 
Mr. and Mrs. S. C. Hall, who recognized his talents, 
and encouraged his literar}' aspirations. But his 
strength of nerve and soundness of health did not 
correspond with his ardent enthusiasm, so that in 
1829 he was fain to accept an appointment in Ja- 
maica. The climate of the West Indies not suiting 
him, he returned home in the following year, and 
soon after obtained the editorship of the Dutnfries 
yoitrpial, a respectable newspaper in the Conserva- 
tive interests. This situation he continued to hold 
for three years with great popularity and success, 
when a change in the proprietorship of the news- 
paper introduced new measures and a new editor ; and 
Allan repaired to lulinburgh, and obtained enqiloy- 
ment as litcrarv- assi^tant in the office of the Me>srs. 
Chambers. In this situation, while he remained in 
it, he was comfortable and happy, \\hile his intel- 
lectual energies had full swing; and besides contri- 
buting many excellent articles to Chambers' Edii:- 
hinxh yonrnal, he wrote extensively in the column- 
of the Scotsman newspa]ier. Mr. Allan was al-n 
author of a I^ife of Sir ! falter Seott, in one octavo 
volume, which enjoyed large jiopularity until it, ^\■ith 
its other brethren, was swallowed up by the admirable 
memoir written by Lockhart ; and he materially as- 
sisted Mr. Beter Macleod in preparing tlie On^:>i,:i 
Xational J/elodies 0/ Scotland, to whicli he furn;.-lied 
several contributions. 

Although still young. Mr. .Mian had aliva-ly ac- 
complished so much, and established so l:i']'c:ul a 
prospect for the future, tliat in October, I^3I. am; 
while only in his 25th year, he ventured <i;i ■■gi\:i\:^' 
hostages to fortune." by marrying Mrs, Mary 
Hill, a widow, the eldest daughter of Mr. William 
I'agan of Curriestanes, and niece of Allan Ciinr.'.r.g- 
hain. In 1S34 also, some of his relative-. tbiMiigh 
]")oIitical intliience, obtained for him a situ.-.ti' ■!! :n 
the stamp-oflice, which insured li;ni a i;i - ierate 
competence, but without depriving liini ot iijor- 
tanity to jirosecute his literary occii; a::' :-. l''..t 
soon at'ter this ]iromis!ng ]M,iiu w.is rea^lu-ii. !.> 
career was sud'ieiilv tenninatei. Hi- ir:te.!i- ctual 
and ]ioctical ardour had beei". t'"' r.ii;^;; : r t;;e 
frame it tenanted; th.e delicate rerv'-us .T^-ani/a- 
tion, which had b-th animated ai;d cvA^^ll'.d him, 



ROBERT ALLAN- 



SIR \VILLL\M ALLAN. 



sank under the too close application of his mind; 
and he died suddenly at Janeficld, near Leith, on 
the 15th of Auijust, 1S35, in the thirtieth year of 
his age, leaving behind him a name, both as a prose 
writer and a poet, which few so young are fortunate 
to establish. 

ALLAN, RonKRT. This minor poet, whose 
merits however deserve commemoration, was, like 
most of his order, of a humble origin, being tlie sou 
of a flax-dresser in Kilbarclian, Renfrewshire. He 
was born in that vill.age on the 4th November, 1774, 
and was the third of a family of ten children. He 
followed tlie occu])ation of a muslin weaver; but 
having been boru a poet, he relieved his monotonous 
occu|utii)n with poetry, so that many of his best 
compositions were produced under the regidar click- 
ing of his hand-loom. Through his early love of 
music and talent for song-writing he became ac- 
quainted with tlie poet Tannahill, and lived with 
hint on terms of friendly intim.acy. When the Sirot- 
tish Minstrel w.as published by K. A. Smith, that 
eminent composer set the contributions of Robert 
Allan to music; and in 1820 several of Allan's songs 
were published in the Ilarp 0/ Kcitf>\-ii<slurc, where 
they attracted considerable notice. His popularity 
as a writer of songs was n(nv so well established, that 
his fricndi thought the time had arrived when his 
reputation as a poet might be confirmed, and the 
poverty of his K)t amended, by a separate publication 
of his own. .Accordingly, a collection of liis poems, 
revised by the editorial care of Robert Burns Hardy, 
teacher of elocution in Glasgow, was published by 
sul)>cription in 1S36; and — unmeritedly, as we think 
— proved a failure. Tiiis sufficed to deter him from 
any such attemi)t in future. 

In the meantime, alllunigh depressed by poverty, 
Robert .Mian had married, and was the father of 
a numerous family, all of whom were married except 
hi-> yinuige-.t s(jn, a ]iortrait-])ainter of great promise, 
who had emigrated to the United States. Embittered 
by the neglect witli which hi.s poetry had been treated, 
and sick of his native country because it was not 
governed according to his own political theories, our 
poet, now in hi-, sixty-seventh year, resolved to leave 
Scotland for ever, and s])end the rest of his days with 
his youthful Benjamin in .\merica. (Ireatly against 
the wi-h of his friend-;, he sailed to New \'ork; but 
the fatigues of the voyage were too much for him, 
and he died in that city on the l.^t of June, 1841, 
only six ilays after landing. 

ALLAN. Sir Wii.mam, R..\., rresi<lont of tlic 
Royal >coiti-.h .Academy of Painting. This dis- 
tingui-lu-d painter was born at Ldinburgh, in the 
year 17S2. and was the son of William .Allan, who 
held the humble office of macer in the Court of 
Se-.-.ion. Notwith-^landing the circumstances of his 
birth, he was de>tined, like other^of the same grade 
in Scotland, to uii'h-rgo a classical education, before 
his future path in life was selected. Accordingly, 
he was sent to the high-school of Ivlinburgli. and 
j)laccd under the preceptorship of Mr. William Nicol, 
whose inem'iry will descend to posterity more fir 
the "|>eck o' maut" which he brewed to sup])Iy one 
memorable sitting where Burns was the laureate, 
than for all his cla-sjcal attainments, res])i-ctnl)le 
though they were. The future artist, however, was 
a poor Latin scholar, though .N'icol was a stern and 
able teacher. I:i fact, the boy already felt nature 
strong within him, sr) that he was sketching the ob- 
jects around him with whatever instrument came to 
hand, while his class-fellows were occu|)ie'l with thi- 
commentaries of Cicsar or the longs and shorts of 



Ovid. So keen was this artistic tendency, that the 
forms and floor of the class-room were frequently 
chalked with his juvenile efforts, while their excel- 
lence pointed out the offender who had thus trans- 
gressed against academic rule. Another luxury in 
which he indulged, was to linger near a group of 
boys playing at marbles; and while studying their 
attitudes and the expression of their countenances, 
he neither thought of the class hour that had elapsed, 
nor the punishment that awaited his remissness. 
After striving against the bent, Mr. Nicol saw that 
he could not transform his pupil into a lover of 
Latin and Clreek; but his pupil had long been of the 
same opinion. He felt within himself not only his 
natural tendency, but a vague conception of the 
eminence to which it would lead him; and his usual 
reply to jiaternal remonstrance was, "Father, in 
spite of all this spending of money in learning Latin, 
1 will be a painter." A painter accordingly it was 
consented that he should be, but his noviciate in the 
profession was sufficiently humble: he was bound 
apprentice to a coach-builder in Leith Walk, to 
paint the armorial bearings on the panels of carriages. 
But Hogarth himself had a less promising com- 
mencement. William Allan, although a stripling 
not more than thirteen years of age, soon gave such 
indications of pictorial excellence, that he was em- 
l)loyed in the delicate task of painting certain ana- 
tomical preparations at Surgeons' Square Hall. At 
the commencement of his labours there, he was 
locked up by mistake at night in the room where he 
had been occupied all day, and was thus compelled 
to spend the hours of darkness amidst the skeletons 
and mangled relics of the dead. The hideous effects 
upon the imagination of a timid susceptible boy in 
such a charnel-house; the sights he saw by the 
glimmer of the moon through the crevices of the 
window-shutters, and the still more terrible phan- 
tasms which his fancy conjured up, formed such a 
night of horror as no artist but Fuseli could have 
relished. Allan himself was wont at a late stage in 
life, and amidst the literary circles of Edinburgh, to 
detail tlie particulars of this ghastly bivouac with 
a force of description and amount of merriment that 
never failed to set the hearers in a roar. It was 
making Vorick's skull to speak anew, for tlie mirth 
of the present generation. 

The high promise of excellence \\hich the coach- 
panel ]")ainting of William Allan afforded, so won 
upon his employer, that, through the influence of 
tlie latter, he was entered in the Trustees' Academy, 
\\here he was a pupil for several years; and it is 
wcjrlhy of remark that WMlkie entered this school at 
the same period with Allan, sat on the same form, 
and coi)ied from the same models and drawings. 
This circumstance, independently of their mutual 
enthusiasm for the art in which tlicy were afterwards 
so distinguished, ripened an affection between them 
which no jealous rivalry could subsequently disturb. 
Their friendship continued unaljated till the close of 
Wilkie's life; and Allan was wont, while training 
his scholars, to refer to his illustrious fellow-]>u]iil, 
as their best model and exam|)Ie. After he had 
spent several years in the lessons of the Trustees' 
-Academy, wliere he had a faithful and efficient 
teacher in Mr. (Iraliam, of whose instructions he 
alw,-i_\> .>p(jke with gratitude and respect, Allan went 
to Londcjii, and was admitted to the school of the 
Roy.il .Academy. On commencing active life, how- 
ever, he soon'experienced the difficulties with which 
tlie line arts, as a profession, have to contend in the 
great inelru])olis of merchandise: his su])eriority was 
lint felt with that readiness which his youthful enthu- 
siasm iiad anticipated, and the demands upon his 



SIR WILLIAM ALLAN. 



33 



pencil were so few as would soon have been insuffi- 
cient to furnish him with a mere subsistence. Like 
his countrymen so situated, he resolved to try the 
experiment elsewhere, and find or make a home 
wherever liis talents could be best appreciated. The 
place he selected for trial was Russia, a country still 
imperfectly known in general society, and where the 
fine arts seemed to have little chance of a cordial 
reception, amidst the recent and as yet imperftct 
civilization of the people. The boldness of his 
choice was also fully matched by scantiness of means 
for its execution; for he knew nothing of the Russ 
language, was slenderly provided with money, and 
had only one or two letters of introduction to some 
of his countrymen in St. Petersburg. 

Thus inadequately equijiped, the artist-adventurer 
threw himself into a career which was ultimately to 
lead to fame and fortune. Even the commencement 
was attended with a startling omen; for the ship in 
which he embarked for Riga was tossed al)out by 
adverse winds, and at length driven almost a wreck 
into Memel. Thus, contrary to his purpose, Allan 
found himself the temporary inh.ibitant of a sea-port 
town in Prussia, in the midst of a people to whose 
tongue he was a stranger, and with pecuniary re- 
sources which a few days would exhaust. Still, 
however, his stout heart triumphed over the difficulty. 
Having settled himself at an inn, he commenced in 
due form tlie occupation of portrait painter, and had 
for his first sitter the Danish consul, to whom he had 
been introduced by the captain of the vessel that 
brought him to Memel. Other sitters followed; and 
having thus recruited his exhausted purse, he resumed 
his original purpose of travelling to Russia, which 
he did by land, passing, on his way to St. Petersburg, 
througli a considerai)le part of the Russian army, 
which was at that time on its march to the field of 
Austerlitz. At St. Petersburg he found an effectual 
patron in his countryman, Sir Alexander Crichton, 
physician to the imperial family, to whom he was 
warmly recommended by Colonel Crichton, the 
jihysician's brother, one of his early patrons in Scot- 
land, and by .Sir Alexander he was introduced to an 
extensive antl fashionable circle of society, wliere his 
artistic talents were appreciated, and his opportu- 
nities for their improvement furthered. To accom- 
plish that improvement, indeed, was so strongly the 
desire of his ardent enthusiastic mind, that neither 
the motives of personal comfort and safety, nor the 
attractive society of the Russian capital, could with- 
hold him from a course of adventurous self-denying 
travel. lie therefore repaired to the Ukraine, 
where he resided for several years, studying the wild 
scenery of the steppes, and the still wilder costume 
and manners of its inhabitants, with a fearless and 
observant eye. He also made occasional journeys 
to Turkey and Tartary, as well as to the remote 
dependencies of the Russian emi)ire, dwelling in llie 
hut of the barbarian serf, or the tent of the wander- 
ing nomade, as well as the palace of the boyar and 
the emir; and amidst the picturesque tribes' of the 
ea.4 and north, with whom he thus freely fraternized, 
he enjoyed a daily intercourse with those whom his 
le^s adventurous brethren at home are contented to 
delineate from the narratives of the traveller or the 
waking dreams of the studio. The large collection 
which .Mian made of the dresses, armour, weai)ons, 
and utensils of ilie various communities among whom 
he sojourned, an 1 the life-like case and fidelity of 
f )rm, feature, and costume, by which the figures of 
his princijial paintings are distinguished, attest how 
carefully and how completely he had identified him- 
self with Russian. Turk, ami Pule, with Cossack, 
Circassian, and Pash.kir. It is much to be regretted 

VOL. I. 



that he kept no journal of the many stirring scenes 
he witnessed, and the strange adventures he under- 
went in this novel pilgrimage in quest of the sublime 
and the beautiful. That they were pregnant with 
interest and instruction, and worthy of a permanent 
record, was well evinced by the delight with which 
his hearers were wont to listen to his c<jnvi.rsational 
narratives, when he happened — which was but rarely 
—to allude to the events of his travels. I Ic ai)])ears 
also to have become an especial favourite with those 
rude children of the mountain and the desert among 
whom he sojourned, and whose language, dress, and 
manners he adopted, so that he is still rememl)ered 
by the old among them as an adopted son or brother, 
while in Poland the usual name by which he is 
distinguished is Ic Raphael Jicossais — the Scottish 
Raphael. 

After this romantic apprenticeship, in which he 
established for himself a high reputation as a painter 
among foreigners, while he was still unknown at 
home, Allan resolved, in 1812, to return to his native 
land. But the invasion of Russia by Napoleon 
obliged him to postpone his purpose; and in addition 
to the large stock of ideas which he had alreadv 
accumulated for future delineation, he was comjielled 
to witness, and treasure up rememljrances of, the 
worst effects of war upon its grandest scale — Idood- 
shed, conflagration, and famine maddening ever,- 
human passion and feeling to the uttermost. On 
the restoration of peace in 1814, Allan returned to 
Edinburgh after a ten years' absence, and commenced 
in earnest the work for which he had undergone so 
singular a training. His first effort, which was 
finished in 1815, and exhibited in .Somerset House, 
was his well-known painting of the "Circassian 
Captives;" and after this followed the "Tartar 
Banditti," "Haslan Gherai crossing the Kuban," 
"A Jewish Wedding in Poland," and "Prisoners 
conveyed to Siberia by Cossacks." But, notwith- 
standing the now highly established reputation of 
these and other productions, which he exhibited in 
his native city, along with the costumes and weapons 
of the countries by which his paintings were illus- 
trated, a home rejnitation was very hard to establish: 
his countrymen, with their proverbial caution, were 
slow to perceive the excellences that addressed 
them in such an unwonted form, and refused to 
sympathize, at first sight, with Poles, Tartars, and 
Circassians. It was well, therefore, for Allan that 
his labours had already been prized in Russia, so 
that he had not been allowed to return home emjity- 
handed. He persevered with the same boldness 
that had carrietl him onward through the encamp- 
ments of the Calmucks or the defiles of the Cauca>u>; 
and to all the remonstrances of his relations, who 
advised him to leave such unprofitable work and 
betake himself to jxirtraits, by which he would gai:i 
both fame and money, his invariable answer was. 
"I will be a historical painter." His ]ier>eve!aiKe 
was at last rewarded. .Sir Waller .Scott. Ji'hn 
Lockhart, and John Wilson, with other.--, who were 
able to ajipreciate the artist's merits, cunibiiicd tn 
purch.ase the "Circassian Ca]nive>" at a ]t:cl- 
adeijuate to its value; and having t'.one thi-, thr 
individual possession of the painting was (icci'lc'i 
among them by lot, in consequence of which i". 
became the property of the l-'.arl of \\\iny--. 
"Haslan (iherai"and the '•Siberian ]-.\:!i.> .al-' 
fiuiiil a munificent ]nu-cha>er in the (.r.ii.i; I '■..kc 
Nicholas, late P.mperor of Rus.-ia, wb.cn Ik v;-;:e'I 
the Scottish cajiital. Tl:e tide liad t!u:- cl-.n'.gi'i: 
and it bore him on to fortur.e, rot only 1:1 ;t..,::ii;.iry 
matters, but to what lie h.ad >ti!I m.^rc .v. \\y-.r\ li.c 
e.-tal'li-hment of his re- utalioii a? .1 ."-co;-.;-h \ ainler 

3 



34 



SIR WILLIAM ALLAN. 



)f histor)'. Although they are so well known, the 
following list of his principal productions may here 
be fitly introduced: — 

The Slave Market at Constantinople — 
purchased by Alexander Hill, Esij., and now the 
property of Miss Davidson of Durievale, Fife. 

John Knox admonishing Mary Queen of 
Scots. — This is the well-known scene described by 
the Reformer himself, in which the beautiful queen, 
irritated by his bold sentiments about the limited 
power of sovereigns, and the liberty of their subjects, 
burst into tears. 

The Ori'IIAN, a scene at Abbotsford, in the 
interior of .Sir Walter Scott's breakfast-room. 

The Meetinc; of David Deans with his 
Dai'ghter Jeanie at Roseneath. In the tale 
of the Heart of Mid- Lothian, Sir Walter Scott, after 
describing the dress, look, and attitude of the stern 
old father, adds, ".^o ha])pily did they assort 
together, that, should I ever again see my friends 
Wilkie or .Mian, I will try to borrow or steal from 
them a sketch of this very scene." This was a fair 
challenge, which .Mian gladly accepted, and the 
picture of the meeting at Roseneath was the result. 

The Regent Mlrrav shot uv Hamilton of 
BoTHWELLllAlGH. — In this great event of Scottish 
histon.', the painter, instead of confining himself to 
the strict historical record, has adopted the poetical 
description of ."-iir Walter Scott in his ballad of 
Cadzcni'. This gave the artist an opportunity of in- 
troducing several personages who were not present 
at the scene, such as Jo'.in Knox and the Earl of 
Morton. 

The Mirder of David Rizzio. 

The Fair .Maid of I'erth.— The scene is that 
in the glover's house, when Henry of the Wynd was 
suddenly awoke on Valentine's morn by the bashful 
salute of the fair object of his affections, according 
to the established custom of the festival. 

The Hatti.e of Preston pans. — The central 
and chief object in this painting is the death of 
Colonel Gardiner, amidst the small handful of 
English infantry whom he joined when his cavalry 
had deserted him. 

The Ettrick Shepherd's Birthday. — In this 
painting, the portraits of the princip.al friends of the 
artist and poet are introduced within the interior of 
Jl'^'Sg^ hou>e .at Eltrive, after a day spent in trouting 
and rambling among the mountains. 

The Deaih <if .VKrniiisHop Sharpe. 

.•\ rREss-ClANG. — The terrible and heart-rending 
fi'ielity and p'nvcr of this delineation have always 
jilaced it in tlie f )remost rank of .Ml.an's artistic pro- 
ductions. A young man, the son of a fisherman, has 
just returned from a long voyage in a merchant ship, 
and l)ccn welconicl l>y his i)arents, relatives, and 
mistres'i: the triumphant feast is ])rcpare<l, and the 
happiness of the jiarty has rtrached its height, when 
a prcs>-gang suddenly rudies in, and the sailor-bov 
is within their gra^j), and about to be carried off. 
The agony of the i)arcnt-,; the fruitless attempt of 
the mother to l)rilte the leader of the gang; the 
stupor of the aged grandfather and grandmother, 
with whom this seems to Ih- the last, as well ns the 
most crushing afilicti<;n which a long-s[)ent and now 
worn-f)Ut life coidd have in store for them -and 
saddest <-f all, the half-dresserl maiden who lias 
hurried to welcome her lover's return, hut onlv to 
lose him, and who has fallen into an iusensihilitv 
that might be mistaken for death — cijm])ose a group 
of misery which art has seld<jm c'luallcil, and 
})erhaps never surpassed. 

These arc but a few of .Mian's many production^, 
which were prized by competent judges as master- 



pieces of historical painting, and the greater part of 
which have been familiarized to the public at large 
through the medium of engraving. His labours, 
however, were more than once interrupted from ill 
health; and at last, a complaint in the eyes sus- 
pended his exertions for several years, and threatened 
to end in total blindness. By medical advice he 
went to Italy; and after sojourning a winter at 
Rome, and spending a short time in Naples, he 
visited Constantinople, Asia Minor, and Greece, and 
returned with recruited health to his beloved studio 
in Edinburgh. He became once more a traveller in 
1834, being desirous of visiting the romantic and 
historical scenery of Spain. His journey on this 
occasion extended into Western Barbaiy, and would 
have been still further lengthened, but for a sudden 
necessity of returning home, after which he con- 
tinued to produce many of his best paintings. A 
desire also to paint the battle of Waterloo led him 
several times to France and Belgium, that he might 
collect sufficient materials in costume, scenery, and 
incident, and study accurately the field of conflict. 
The result was a magnificent view of this great com- 
bat of nations, »vhich, at the exhibition of the Royal 
Academy in 1843, ^^'^s purchased by the Duke of 
Wellington, who testified his approbation of its 
truth and accuracy. Allan had now done enough 
for fame and fortune, both as artist and traveller; 
but in 1844 he again grasped his pilgrim's staff for 
a journey into the far north. He visited Russia, 
and there produced his painting of "Peter the Great 
teaching his subjects the art of Ship-building;" which, 
after being exhibited in the Royal Academy in 1845, 
was purchased by the Emperor of Russia, for the 
winter palace of St. Petersburg. In consequence of 
the success of his first painting of Waterloo, he 
resolved on producing a second; and, as the former 
was delineated as viewed from the French side of the 
action, the latter was from the British. Indepen- 
dently also of the stirring nature of the subject, his 
personal as well as patriotic feelings were engaged 
in this fresh effort, for it was intended for the com- 
petition of Westminster Hall in 1846. Great, how- 
ever, as were its mei'its, it was unsuccessful. It was 
afterwards purchased by the Junior United .Service 
Club in London, of whose splendid rooms it now 
forms a conspicuous ornament. The public honours 
which had already rewarded him, might indeed 
sufficiently console him under this disa]ipointment ; 
for in 1826 he was elected an associate of the Rc)yal 
-•\cademy, and in 1835 ^'^ academician. Four 
years later, on the death of Watson, he was unani- 
mously preferred to the office of president of the 
Royal Scottish Academy; and in 1842, after having 
been appointed her majesty's limner for Scotland on 
the death of Wilkie, he received the honour of 
knighthood. He was now also the venerable father 
of Scottish painting, and could look around him 
with ]:)leasure upon a race of jiromising artists whose 
genius his exam]de and labours had kindled in 
a de]iartment which, as yet, his countrymen had 
almost wholly neglected. 

The last jirofessional labour in which Sir \\'il]iam 
Allan was engaged was the "Battle of Bannocklnirn.'' 
into the difficult and comjdicated details of which he 
entered with all the insjiiration and vigour of his 
best days. The ]K'riod of action selected was the 
critical moment when the English, daunted by the 
discomfiture of their bowmen, the overthrow of their 
s].lendid cavalry am<jng the concealed ]iits, and the 
ap])earance of what seemed a fresh Scottish army 
descending from the Gillie's Hill, gave w.iy on every 
side, and were prc-sed and borne down by the rc^ist- 
less effort of the four Scottish bodies, now united 



CHARLES ALSTON 

into one, with the heroic Bruce at their head. But 
this painting, to which he clung to the last, and 
touched and retouched with a dying hand, he did 
not live to finish, lie died at his house in Great 
King Street, Edinburgh, on February 23, 1850. As 
a painter. Sir William Allan will long be gratefully 
remembered in the annals of Scottish art, for the 
impulse which he gave to historical composition. 
For this department he was eminently fitted; for his 
excellence in painting did not so much consist in 
character and colour, as in his admirable power in 
telling a story and his general skill in composition, 
by which each of his productions is a striking poeti- 
cal narrative. Sir Walter Scott, a congenial spirit, 
who highly prized and affectionately loved him, was 
wont to speak of him under the familiar endearing 
name of "Willie Allan." 

ALSTON, Charles, M.D., an eminent botanist, 
was bom in 1683, in Lanarkshire, and spent his 
early years at Hamilton Palace, under the patronage 
of the Duchess of Hamilton. Her grace wished him 
to study the law, but he preferred botany and medi- 
cine, and accordingly, in 1 7 16, set out for Leyden, 
where those sciences were at that time taught by the 
illustrious Boerhaave. Here he found a great num- 
ber of young Scotsmen engaged in the same pursuit, 
and all inspired with an uncommon degree of en- 
thusiasm in their studies, which they had cauglit from 
their master. Alston, after taking his degree as 
<loctor of physic, returned to his native country, and 
began to practise in Edinburgh. He obtained the 
sinecure oftice of king's botanist, through the influence 
of the Duke of Hamilton, heritable keeper of Holy- 
rood House, to which tlie garden was attached. This 
garden he enriched by large collections which he had 
ra.ade in Holland, where botanical science was then 
more highly cultivated than in any other country in 
Europe. In 1720, notwithstanding that a botanical 
class was taught in the college iiy a professor of 
eminence named Preston, he began a course of 
lectures in tlie king's garden. Preston at length 
waxing old, Alston was, in 1738, chosen to succeed 
him, as ]irofessor of botany and materia medica 
united. He was exceedingly laborious in his duties 
as a professor, giving a course on botany every 
summer, and one on materia medica every winter; 
and never sparing any pains which he thought could 
be conducive to the jjrogress of his pupils. The 
celebrated Dr. Fothergill, in his character of Dr. 
Russell, bears ample testimony to the assiduity of 
Dr. Alston, who had been his master; and describes 
in glowing language the benefit which those who 
attended him had the means of reaping, his caution 
in s]ieculation, and how laborious he was in experi- 
nient. For the assistance of his pupils, he published, 
about 1740, a list of the officinal plants cultivated in 
the Edinburgh medical garden. Of Linnajus's sys- 
icm, which was first promulgated in 1736, Dr. .\lston. 
like many other jihilosophers of his daV, was a steady 
opponent. He jiublished a paper against it, on the 
sexes of plants, in the first volume of Physical and 
Literary J-'.ssays, a miscellany which was commenced 
at Edinl)urgh in 1751. The controversy which took 
place at that period among>t naturalists has now lost 
all its interest, seeing that the method of Linna.'u-;. 
after serving a useful jiurpose, has been superseded 
by the natural system, to the foundation of which 
Linnanis in no small degree contributed, liut which 
it was left to Jussicu and De Candolle to mature. 
Dr. .\lst(}n also contributed some articles to an 
Edinburgh miscellany entitled Medical Kssavs; the 
most important is one on o]iium. In 1753 he 
published an introduction to Dr. Patrick Blair's 



ALEXANDER ANDERSON. 



35 



Index Afaterice Medica, a work which resembled his 
own index in a considerable degree. This introduc- 
tion was a separate work, and was entitled Tyroci- 
nium Botanieum Edinburi^ense. Dr. Alston, as the 
contemporary of the first .\Ionro, and professor of a 
kindred branch of science, was by no means unworthy 
of either his time or his place. He must be con- 
sidered as one of those who have contributed to 
the exaltation of the college of Edinburgh as a 
school of medical science. He died on the 22d 
of November, 1760, in the seventy-seventh year of 
his age. 

ANDERSON, Adam, author of the largest 
British compilation upon commercial histor)-, was a 
native of Scotland, bom about the year 1692. Hav- 
ing removed to London, he was for forty years a 
clerk in the .South Sea House, and at length was 
appointed chief clerk of the stock and new annuities 
in that establishment, in which situation he continued 
till his death. He was appointed one of the trustees 
for establishing the colony of Georgia, by charter 
dated June 9th, 5 Geo. H. He was also one of the 
court of assistants of the Scots corporation in Lon- 
don. In 1762 he published his work entitled A 
Histcrrical and C/irottological Deduction of the Origin 
of Commerce, from the earliest acccnints to the present 
time; containitig a history of the large commercial in- 
terests of the British Empire, &.C., London, 2 vols. 
folio. The elaborate character of this work says 
much for the industry of the author. It was sub- 
sequently improved in a new edition by David 
Macpherson, 4 vols, quarto; and a manual abridg- 
ment of the work may still be considered a want in 
our literature. Mr. Anderson died soon after he 
had given it to the world, January- loth, 1 765, at 
the age of seventy-three. 

ANDERSON, Alexam)?:r, a ver)^ eminent 
mathematician, bom at Aberdeen, near the close of 
the sixteenth centurv'. How or where he acquired 
his mathematical education is not known; he pro- 
bably studied belles-lettres and philosophy in his 
native university. He comes into notice at Paris, 
early in the seventeenth centurj-, as a private teacher 
or professor of mathematics. In that city, between 
the years 1612 and 1619, he publi>hed or edited 
various geometrical and algebraical tracts, which are 
conspicuous for their ingenuity and elegance. It is 
doulnful whether he was ever acquainted with the 
famous Vieta, master of requests at Paris, who died 
in 1603; but his pure taste and skill in mathematical 
investigation pointed him out to the executors of that 
illustrious man — who had found leisure, in the inter- 
vals of a laborious profession, to cultivate and extend 
the ancient geometn.-, and by adojiting a system <'l 
general symbols, to lay the foundation, and begin the 
su]ierstnicture of algebraical science — as the jier-oii 
most proper for revising and jiuhlishing his valiialile 
manuscripts. Anderson, however, did not coiitme 
himself to the duty of a mere editor; he enriched the 
text with learned comments, and gave neat demon- 
strations of those i^rojiositions which had been lei: 
imperfect. He afterwards jiroduced a sixcinien . 1 
the application of geometrical analy-.i-.. which :- 
distinguished by its clearness and cla>-ic ele^Mnee. 

The works o'f this eminent ]'er>on .iniount t" ~a 
thin quarto volumes, now very >carce. I he-e ate 
I. Stipplemcntum Ap^'llcuii Red:::::: s:: c ,:>::;. 
probletiiatis hactcuus dcsidcratt cd .Ip :,.>::: /'. ., ■ 
dt'ctrinain trepi fficreu'i' i; Mar:!:r i,''.\:\:..:. }'.::■::. 
Regiisino hii/usi/HC u^^n i!a pridnn ni. '^tutrii':. \k.: 
Pari-;. i6l2.'4to. Tlii- tr.ict refer- t^ the ii'Miin 
of inclinations, bv v.hich. in ceriain i..i-e~. the ."a J-.- 



36 



CHRISTOPHER ANDERSON. 



cation of the cun'e called the conchoid is superseded. 
2. Atrto\o7ta: Pro Zetctico Apolloniani problcinatis a 
se jam fridem edito in supplemcnio Apollonii Redriiiz'i. 
Being an addition to the former work: Paris, 1615, 
4to. 3. The edition of the works of Vieta: Paris, 
1615, 4to. 4. Ad Angiilartim Scctioncm Aualytica 
Thcorctnata KaOoXiKurrepa, &c. : I'aris, 16 1 5, 4to. 

5. {'indicia' Arc/iimcdis, Sec: Paris, 1616, 4to. 

6. Alcxandri Andcrsoni Scoti Excrcitationum Mat he- 
maticarum Dccas Prima, &c. : Paris, 1619, 410. 
All these pieces of this excellent geometrician are 
replete with the finest specimens of pure geometrical 
exercises that have ever perhaps been produced by 
any authors, ancient or modern. Hcsides these, 
literary history is not aware of any other publications 
by .\nderson, though probably there may have been 
others. Indeed, from the last piece it fully ai)pears 
tiiat he had at least written, if not published, another, 
viz. A Treatise on the Mensuration of Solids, perhaps 
with a reference to gauging; as in several problems, 
■where he critically examines the treatise of Kepler 
on cask-gauging, he often refers to his own work on 
stereometn,'. 

The subject of this memoir was cousin-german 
to^Mr. David Anderson, of Finshaugh, a gentle- 
man who also possessed a singular turn for mathe- 
matical knowledge, and who could apply his ac- 
quirements to so many useful purposes that he was 
popularly known at Aberdeen by the name of Davie 
Do-a'-things. He accjuired prodigious local fame by 
removing a large rock which had formerly obstructed 
the entrance to the harl>our of Aberdeen. Mathe- 
matical genius seems to have been in some degree 
inherent in the whole family; for, through a daughter 
of Mr. David Anderson, it reached the celebrated 
James Gregory, inventor of the retlecting telescope, 
who was the son of that lady, and is said to have re- 
ceived from her the elements of mathematical know- 
ledge. From the same lady was descended the late 
Dr. Reid of Olasgow, who was not less eminent for 
his acquaintance with the mathematics than for his 
metaj)hy.sical writings. 

ANDERSON, CitRiSTOPiiF.R. This excellent 
divine, whose wliole life was an uninterrupted career 
of conscientious painstaking activity and useful- 
ness, was born in the \Ve>t How, Edinburgh, on the 
19th of February, 17S2. Being intended for business, 
he was entered as junior clerk in a friendly insur- 
ance office; but at the early age of seventeen, having 
joined the religious body called Indejicndents, and 
two years afterwards that uf the English Baptists, 
he relinquished his i)rofital)!e clerkship tiiat he might 
devote himself tcj the ministerial office over that small 
community in lOdinburgh who held his own religious 
doctrines. I'"or this ])uri)()se he underwent a liastv 
course of study in the university of i;(Hnburgh, which 
he completed with almost equal speed at the Baptist 
colleges fjfOlney and Bristol, where a twelvemonth's 
study of theology was alternated with tiie jiractice of 
preaching as an itinerating missionary; and having in 
this way qualified himself for the work he originallv 
contemplated, he returned to IMinburgh and devoted 
himself to the little connmmity that had waited his 
arrival. His commencement in the .Scottish metro- 
polis, where learned and elofpient ministers ,ire so 
abundant and so highly prized, was ns unjiroinisinn- as 
his educational training: his usual audience in tiie 
small chapel he had hired for the occasion consisted of 
from fifty to seventy hearers, while the regular mem- 
bers of his flock amounted to fourteen or fifteen 
persons, and his call to be their minister exhibited ihe 
signatures of not more than thirteen names. So small 
a beginning, however, is no measure of the capacitv 



of dissenterism under the guidance of a popular 
preacher; and his congregation increased until the 
small chapel could not hold them, so that they were 
obliged to remove to a larger. And while thus suc- 
cessful, his labours were not confined to his own par- 
ticular locality. He itinerated as an occasional mis- 
sionary over several parts of the United Kingdom, 
bestowing not only his labours but his money in the 
establishment of a home mission in the Highlands; 
and in 1810 he originated the Edinburgh Bible 
Society, an institution that combined the clergy of 
Scotland of almost every denomination into one 
body of religious action. 

The Rev. Christopher Anderson had now become 
a man of considerable note in Edinburgh; and it 
speaks much for his diligence and zeal that, notwith- 
standing his scanty education, he had been able to 
make way among the learned and accomplished, and 
become a leader among them in the field of Chris- 
tian enterprise. But his natural capacities were 
excellent, while his course of action seemed the fittest 
school for maturing and improving them. Thus suc- 
cessful as a minister, it was natural that such a man 
should attempt the work of authorship; and for this 
an occasion was soon presented. During his itiner- 
ating missionary tours Ireland had fallen within his 
range; and from the experience which he acquired of 
that country during a considerable sojourn there in 
1 8 14, he was induced to publish A Memorial in behalf 
of the Native Irish, with a vieiu to their Improz'evtent 
in A/oral and Religions Knoi.vledge through the vied- 
ium of their 07vn Language. At first it was only 
a small pamphlet, but he afterwards expanded it into 
a duodecimo volume. Another such attempt was 
occasioned by his laying before the Edinburgh Bible 
Society, in 1819, a MS. entitled A Memorial respect- 
ing the Diffnsioji of the Scriptures, particularly in the 
Celtic or Iberian Dialects. His statements on this sub- 
ject were judged so important that the society re- 
quested him to publish them; and on complying with 
their desire, the effect of this production was to in- 
crease the exertions for the diffusion of Irish and 
(jaelic Bibles beyond all former example. This work 
he afterwards enlarged under the title of The A\^tivc 
Irish and their Descendants. But besides thus direct- 
ing the public attention to the religious wants of 
Ireland and the Highlands, Mr. Anderson's author- 
ship was called to a subject of domestic and personal 
interest. His beloved wife had died: his family of 
two sons and three daughters had also passed suc- 
cessively away; and these afllictions, by which 
he was left alone in the world, had brought on not 
merely the appearance, but also the infinnities, of 
a premature old age. It was during these heavy 
successive calamities, and before the grave had finally 
closed upon every member of the family, that he sat 
down to console himself by the labours of his pen, 
and produced The Domestic Constitution ; or the 
/■'aini/v Circle the Source and I'est of National 
Stability. 

But the chief literar)' production of Mr. Anderson 
was The Annals of the English Bible; and, like his 
earlier attempts in authorshi]i, it originated in 
accident, and was ex]ianded by after-reflection. At 
tile tliird centenary of Coverdale's translation of the 
Bilile in 1835 he ])reached a sermon on the subject; 
and as he had bestowed much attention on it, his 
facts Were so new and his views so important to 
many of his audience, that they requested him to 
jiuiilish the discourse. It was accordingly jnibiished 
under the title of I'lie English .Scriptures, their fint 
l\c<eplu>u and Effects, including Memorials of Tytidalc, 
Enlh, Co-'crilale, and Rogers. The production was 
so favourably received by the public that he was re- 



JAMES ANDERSON. 



37 



quested to reproduce it in a more ample form; and 
on assenting, he soon found that the task would re- 
quire the study not merely of weeks but of years. Un- 
dismayed, however, by such a prospect, he addressed 
himself to the task; and from the years 1837 to 1845 
his researches were prosecuted in the library of the 
liritisJi Museum, the Bodleian at Oxford, the univer- 
sity library and others at Cambridge, the Baptist 
Museum at Bristol, besides numerous private sources, 
from all of which he culled such information as filled 
several bulky volumes of note-books. But when the 
Annuls 0/ the Bible was published the public curiosity 
had abated, or been directed into new channels; and 
even tliose who felt most interest in the subject were 
dismayed at the voluminous dimensions in which it 
was presented to their notice. So far therefore as 
immediate success was concerned, the work was 
a literarj- failure; and no occasion has since occurred 
to revive it into popularity. But it is not the less 
a valuable production, from which, as from a store- 
house, the theologian can at once get those necessary 
materials which he would be compelled to seek over 
a wide and difficult field of investigation. After 
a life of such active usefulness as missionary, minister, 
founder and secretary of religious associations, corres- 
pondent with foreign missions, and author, the Rev. 
Christopher Anderson died at Edinburgh on the l8th 
of February, 1852, within a single day of completing 
the seventieth year of his age. 

ANDERSON, Jamf.s, an eminent antiquary, was 
the son of the Rev. Patrick Anderson, who had been 
ejected for nonconformity at the Restoration, and 
who afterwards suffered imprisonment in the Bass for 
preaching in a conventicle at Edinburgh. The sub- 
ject of this memoir was born in Edinburgli, August 
5th, 1662, and in 1677 is found studying philosophy 
in the university of that city, where, after finishing 
a scholastic education, he obtained the degree of 
Master of Arts on the 27th of May, 1680. He chose 
the law for his profession, and, after serving an ap- 
prenticeship under Sir Hugh Paterson of Bannock- 
burn, was admitted a member of the society of writers 
to the signet in 1691. In this branch of the legal 
profession the study of written antiquities in some 
measure forces itself upon the practitioner; and it 
appears that .A.nderson, though a diligent and able 
man of business, became in time too fond of the 
accessory employment to care much for the principal. 
A circumstance which occurred in 1704 decided his 
fate by tempting him into the field of antiquarian con- 
troversy. The question of the union of the two coun- 
tries was then very keenly agitated — on the one side 
with much jealous assertion of the national indepen- 
dency — and on the other, with not only a contempt 
for the boasts of the Scots, but a revival of the old 
claims of Englaml for a superiority or paramouncy 
over their country. A lawyer named .Vttwood in 

1704 published a pamphlet in which all the exploded 
pretensions of Edward I. were brought prominently 
into view, and a direct dominion in the crown of Eng- 
land asserted over that of Scotland. Yox this work, 
Mr. .\nderson, thougli altogether unknown to Mr. 
Attwooil, was cited as an evidence and eye-witness 
to vouch some of tiie mo-.t important original charters 
and grants by the kings of Scotland, which .\tlwood 
maintained were in favour of the point he laboured 
to establish. Mr. Anderson, in consequence of such 
an appeal, thought himself bound in duty to his 
country to publish what he knew of the matter, and 
to vindicate some oi the be>t of the Scottish kings, 
who were accused by Attwood of a b.ose and volun- 
tary surrender of their sovereignty. Accordinglv, in 

1705 he published An Essay, sluncin^ that the C remit 



of Seotland is Imperial and Independent, Edinburgh, 
8vo, which was so acceptable t(i his country, that, 
besides a reward, thanks were voted to him by par- 
liament, to l)e delivered by the lord-chancellor, in 
presence of her majesty's high commissioner and the 
estates, at the same time that Attwood's book, like 
others of the same nature, was ordered to Ijc burned 
at the cross of Edinburgh by the hands of the com- 
mon hangman. Mr. Anderson's publication is now 
of little value, except for the charters attached to it 
in the shape of an appendix. 

This affair was the crisis of Anderson's fate in life. 
He had, in the course of his researches for the essay, 
collected a large mass of national papers: the studv 
of charters was just then beginning to be appreciated 
by antiquaries; the enthusiasm of the nation was 
favourable, for the moment, to any undertaking 
which would show the ancient respectability of its 
separate system of government. Under all these 
circumstances Anderson found it easy to secure the 
patronage of the Scottish estates towards a design for 
engraving and publishing a series of fac-similes of the 
royal charters previous to the reign of James E, and 
of seals, medals, and coins, from the earliest to the 
present time. In November, 1 706, he had a parlia- 
mentary grant of £'>po towards this object. He then 
proceeded vigorously with the work, and in March, 
1707, had not only expended the ;^300 granted by 
parliament, but ;^590 besides, which he had drawn 
from his own funds. A committee reported the facts; 
and the estates, while they approved of his conduct, 
recommended to the queen to bestow upon him an 
additional contribution of ;,^io5o sterling. Another 
parliamentary act of grace — and one of the verj- 
last proceedings of the Scottish estates — was to re- 
commend him to the queen "as a person meriting 
her gracious favour, in conferring any office or tnist 
upon him, as her majesty, in her royal wisdom, shall 
think fit." 

Quite intoxicated with this success, Anderson now 
gave up his profession, and, resolving to devote him- 
self entirely to the national service as an antiquary, 
removed to London, in order to superintend the pro- 
gress of his work. The event only added another 
proof to what is already abundantly clear — that 
scarcely any prospects in the precarious fields of 
literature ought to tempt a man altogether to resign 
a professional means of subsistence. The money 
voted by the expiring parliament is said to have 
never been jiaid; — the British senate perha])s con- 
sidering itself not the proper heir of the Scottish 
estates. Apparently in lieu of money, he was 
favoured, in 1 71 5, with the appointment of post- 
master-general for Scotland; but of this he was de- 
prived in little more than two years. What iirogrc>s 
lie now made with his great work is not very clearly 
known. He is found in 171S adverli>ing that tho>e 
who might wish to encourage it '"could see specimens 
at his house, above the post-office in Edinlnirgh." 
As the expense of engraving must have borne hard 
upon his diminished resources, he would api-ear lo 
have digressed for some years into an enqiloymeiu 
of a kindreil nature, attended with greater faLiiiiie> 
of publication. In 1727 he pul)Ii>hed the tw.i t):>t 
volumes of his well-known Colh-cticriS rc'dfin^- .\' '■:■: 
History cf Mar\\ Qticen of Scotland, Kdinluu-h. 4:". 
which was speedily completed by tlie additi'^n y\ two 
other volumes. This work contains a Iai:;e ir,.i-- 
of valuable original docuineirL> ci>nnec:ed \\:.\\ :l;e 
Marian controver.-y; but (.iec'rge Chal!ner>. \v Im \\dit 
over the same ground, insinuates that there > t<io 
much reason to ,-u>]X'ct hi> hone>ty a- a ; ra:'.~L r;;>er. 
If the prejudices of tlie two men are fairly lialanced 
against the reputations \\hicli they re-;'eet;\e.y bear 



38 



JAMES ANDERSON. 



as antiquaries, we must acknowledge that the charge 
may not be altogether groundless. 

Anderson died in 1728 of a stroke of apoplexy, 
leaving his great work unfinished. The plates were 
sold in 1729 by auction at ;^53o, and it was not till 
1737 that the work appeareil, uniler the title of 
SWc'i/us Diplomatum d Xumismatum Scotiic The- 
sauriis, the whole being under the care of the cele- 
brated Thomas Ruddiman, who added a most elabor- 
ate preface. 

ANDERSON, Jamks, D.D., author of a large 
and useful work, entitled Koyal Genealoi^es, was 
the brother of .\dam Anderson, author of the Con- 
vurcial Htstory. He was for many years minister 
of the Scots Presbyterian church in Swallow Street, 
Piccadilly, and was well known among the jwople 
of that persuasion in London by the nickname of 
"Hishop .Anderson." lie was a learned but im- 
prudent man, and lost a considerable ]iart of his pro- 
perty by rash speculations in the South .Sea scheme. 
His great work as an author was Koyal Genealogies, 
or the Geiualogical Tables of Emperors, Kings, and 
Princes, from Adam ( ! ) to these Times, London, 
folio, 1732. The compilation of this huge work, in 
which he was aided by many eminent personages, 
whose families entered into its plan, cost him, accord- 
ing to his own account, the labour of seven years. 
It is certainly the comi^letest work of the kind in 
existence, though with no pretensions to discrimina- 
tion. The author says very frankly in his preface, 
that "he hxs avoided all terms and expressions that 
may give offence to any nation or family, to any 
person or party; having nothing to do with the 
national controversies of historians, nor with the ec- 
clesiastical and religious debates of theologians, nor 
with the politics of statesmen, nor with the private 
jangles of the critics in a work of this kind, but only 
with facts and //(//// truth: so that he has let every 
nation enjoy its own faith; and if any find fault, he 
hopes they will readily excuse him, not having de- 
signed to offend them, and is willing to make satis- 
faction if he lives to ])ul)lish a second edition." 
Dr. .\nderson al>(j wrote The Constitutions of the 
Free Masons, being the chaplain of tliat body in 
London. The dates of this worthy man's birth and 
death are not ascertained. He lived in a house 
opposite to St. James's Church, Piccadilly. 

ANDERSON, Jamks, an agricultural and miscel- 
laneous writer of great merit, was the son of a farmer 
at Hermiston, in the cmintyof Mid- Lothian, where he 
was born in the year 1 739. His father <iying when 
he was very young, he was educated by his giiardian 
to occupy the farm, which accordingly he began to 
m.an.age at the early .ige of fifteen. It m.ay be sup- 
posed that he could not have been intrusted with so 
important a charge if he had not already m.anifested 
symptom^ of superior character and intellect; much 
Icns, without such iiualitications, could lie have dis- 
charged it, as he is said to have done, witli a|)proliri- 
tion. In reading some agricultural work> to (jualirv 
himself for his duties, lie h.id observed tli.it it would 
be of .advantage to study cliemiNtry: he accordingly 
attemled the lectures given in the university of Ivjin- 
burgh by Dr. Cullen, who, although surprised that 
one so young should have formed this resolution, had 
soon reason to admire his ])U])irs laudable curiositv 
and good sense, and liberally afforded him every en- 
couragement. To chemistry he adiled the study of 
certain collateral branches of science; so that, when 
he entered upon his farm, he was not onlv able to 
keep up with his more aged and experienced neigh- 
bours, but to adoj)t a number of improvements, which 



were speedily found to be of a most profitable nature. 
Among his improvements was the introduction of 
the small two-horse plough, which since then has so 
completely banished the lumbering engine formerly 
drawn by a string of cattle. Nor did the necessary 
business of his farm preclude all advancement in 
knowletlge. He still prosecuted his studies, and 
contrived to amass an immense stock of information 
upon almost all subjects. 

His first attemjits in literature appeared in "Essays 
on Planting," in Ruddiman's Weekly Magazine for 
1771. In 1777, having previously removed to a large 
farm in Aberdeenshire, he published these essays in 
a separate volume. In 1776 appeared \i\<i Essay on 
Chimneys, in which the princijde afterwards acted 
on in the patent Bath stove was first explained. In 
the same year with his volume on Planting appeared 
various pamphlets connected with rural economy, all 
of which were more or less calculated to gratify the 
increasing desire of his countrymen for scientific 
knowledge upon such familiar subjects. The fame of 
these works procured him a very extensive acquaint- 
ance with persons of eminence, who wished to profit 
by the remarks of so able a practical farmer; and in 
1780 the university of Aberdeen acknowledged his 
merit by conferring upon him the degree of LL.D. 

Anderson had been married in 1768; and a desire 
of educating a very numerous family, and enjoying 
literary society, induced him, in 1783, to remove to 
Edinburgh, leaving the management of his farm to 
persons properly qualified. A tract which he had 
written on the subject of the fisheries, though not 
printed, attracted the attention of the government, 
and he was requested, in 1784 to undertake a tour of 
the western coast of .Scotland, for the puq^ose of ob- 
taining information on this important subject. He 
performed the task to the high satisfaction of his 
employers, who, however, never offered him any re- 
muneration. The result of his labours appeared in 
1785 as^« Account of the P7-esent State of the Hebrides 
and Western Coasts of Scotlaiul; being the substance 
of a Report to the Lords of the Treasury. 

Passing over some minor works of Dr. Anderson, 
we must make honourable mention of a literary and 
scientific miscellany which he commenced in 179 1, 
under the title of The Bee. This work was publislied 
in weekly numbers at sixpence, and, by its delight- 
ful intermixture of useful information with lighter 
matters of the belles-lettres, was eminently calculated 
for the improvement of the young. It was occasion- 
ally embellished with jiortraits, views, and draughts 
(jf scientific objects — in, it is true, a very homely 
style, but still not much inferior to the taste of the 
age. The work ran from the 22d of December, 
1790, to tile 2 1st of January, 1 794, when it was at 
length reluctantly abandoned, because such a large 
pro])()rtion of the subscribers were remiss in their 
payments as to induce an absolute loss to the con- 
ductor. The cessation of such a meritorious little 
]>ul)lication was the more to be regretted, as Ander- 
son had only been able, t<jvvards its close, to bring 
the assistance of his numerous and distant correspon- 
dents into full play. The numbers published form 
eighteen volumes duodecimo, and throughout the 
whole of that space, we believe there does not occur 
one morally reprehensible line. 

.Among other papers in 'Jlie Pee \va=, a series of 
essays on the ])olitical progress of Britain. Though 
only written in what would now be considered a 
liberal strain, they a]ipeared in the eyes of the sheriff 
as calculated to have an injurious tendency at that 
inflamed period; and the learned doctor was accord- 
ingly summoned to give up the name of the author. 
I his Anderson refused, from peculiar notions as to 



JOHN ANDERSON. 



39 



literary secrecy; he desired to be liimself considered 
as the author. After a second and a third applica- 
tion, he still refused; and when the printers were sent 
for, and similarly interrogated, he charged them, in 
the face of the magistrates, to preserve his secret. 
All this was the more singular, as his own principles 
were known to be eminently loyal. Respect for his 
talents and character induced the magistrates to let 
the matter drop. The real author, a worthless 
person named Callender, being afterwards about to 
quit his country for America, waited upon the 
authorities, and insinuated that the papers were 
written by Lord Gardenstone, a man to whom he 
owed many obligations. Immediately on hearing of 
this infamous conduct, Anderson came for%vard, and 
refuted the charge by avowing Callender himself to 
be the real author. The whole of this affair reflects 
great credit upon the character of Dr. Anderson. 

About the year 1797, this ingenious person re- 
moved with his family to London, where he under- 
took various works connected with his favourite 
study of agriculture. For several years he wrote the 
articles on this subject in the Moittlily Kevieio; and 
from 1 799 to 1802 he conducted a separate miscellany, 
under the title of Recrcattons in Agriculture. P'rom 
the last-mentioned date, he devoted himself almost 
entirely to the relaxation which advanced years and 
severe studies had rendered necessary, and particu- 
larly to the cultivation of his garden, which became 
a miniature of all his past labours. In 1801 he 
married a second wife, who survived him. lie 
died on the 15th of October, 1S08, at the age of 
sixty-nine. 

In his younger days, Dr. Anderson was remarkably 
handsome in his person, of middle stature, and robust 
make; but the overstrained exertion of his mental 
powers afterwards shook his constitution, and hurried 
him into old age. Of his abilities, his works exhibit 
so many proofs that they may be appealed to with 
]")erfect confidence. Although a voluminous writer, 
there is no subject connected with his favourite pur- 
suit on which he has not thrown new light. But 
his knowledge was not confined to one science. He 
exhibited, to give only one instance, very considerable 
powers of research, when, in 1 773, he published, in 
the first edition of the Encyclopedia Britannica, an 
article under the head "Monsoon." In this he clearly 
predicted the result of Captain Cook's first voyage; 
namely, that there did not exist, nor ever would be 
found, any continent or large island in the southern 
hemisphere except New Holland alone; and this was 
completely verified on Captain Cook's return seven 
months afterwards. Upon the whole, though tlie 
name of Dr. Anderson is associated with no scientific 
or literary triumphs of great splendour, his exertions, 
by their eminent and uniform usefulness, have given 
him very considerable claims to respect. A minute 
si)ecification of his works is to be found in the Scols 
M.tgtiziiic for 1809. 

ANDERSON, John, M. A. An eminent Presby- 
terian clergyman of last century, grandfather of 
i'rofe>s.)r Anderson, the subject of the next article. 
Of his early history very little is known, except that 
he receiveil a university education, and took his 
degree in arts. He was after\vards preceptor to the 
great John, Duke of .\rgyle, and he mentions in his 
Letters upon the Ckertiires concerning Kirk Sessions 
and Presbyteries, that he had resided in Edinburgh 
for twenty-five years in early life. He seems also to 
have taught a school, and he is upbraided by "Curat 
Calder" with having l)een "an old pedantic dominie, 
teaching luce dat a.'' It was not, however, till after 
his settlement as minister of Dumbarton, that he 



became known as an author. The earliest of his 
productions that has been discovered is entitled A 
Dialogue between a Curat and a Countreyman concern- 
ing the English Service, or Common-Prayer Book of 
England, which was printed in fiuart<j at Glasgow, 
about 1710. The question relative to the form of 
prayer used in Scotland immediately after the Re- 
formation, was at this time keenly canvassed by the 
Scottish Episcopalians and Presbyterians, and the 
clergy of the former persuasion had very shortly 
before introduced the liturgy into their church service. 
(Carstares' State Papers.) Mr., afterwards liishop. 
Sage endeavoured, in his Eundamental Charter 0/ 
Presbytery Examined, to show that the English liturgy 
had been used in Scotland for at least seven year's 
after the establishment of the Protestant religion. 
In this he was opposed by Mr. Anderson, who 
adduced many arguments to prove that it was not 
the English liturgy that is spoken of by the Scottish 
historians, but that used by the English church at 
Geneva. Soon afterwards Anderson jiublished a 
Second Dialogue (dated 1711), in which, says he, 
"there is hardly anything of importance which is 
not said in the very words of the writers of the other 
side," and in which South, Beveridge, Hammond, 
and Burnet are the curates whose sentiments are 
opjjosed. A Letter from a Countreyrnan to a Curat 
followed the dialogues, and received several answers, 
of which we shall only mention one, written by 
Robert Calder, an Episcopalian clergyman, the 
friend of Dr. Archibald Pitcairn, and printed in his 
Miscellatty Numbers relating to the Controzersies abouc 
the Book of Common Prayer, &c., folio, 1 7 13. To 
this attack Anderson replied in a pamphlet entitled 
Curat Calder WJiipt. He soon after published A 
Sermon preached in the Church of Ayr at the Opening 
of the Synod, on Tit es day the 1st of .April, 1 712, 
printed at the desire of the Synod of Glasgow and 
Ayr (cpiarto, price sixpence); and in 1714 the work 
by which he is best known appeared. It has for its 
title, A Defence of the Church Gozernment, Eaith, 
IVorship, and Spirit of the Presbyterians, in ansrcer to 
a Book entitled An Apology for Mr. Thomas Khiiid, 
&c., 4to, and is dedicated to Archibald, Earl of Islay. 
About the beginning of the year 1717, Anderson 
informs us, "The people of Glasgow were pleased 
to move that I should be called to be one of the 
ministers of that place" {I^etter to Stewart of Par- 
dcK'an, p. l), but the proceedings relative to this 
transaction strikingly illustrate the truth of Wodrow's 
remark in a letter to Dr. Cotton Mather.^ "We 
are biting and devouring one another,'' says the 
venerable historian, "and like to be consumed one 
of another." After a course of opposition and debate 
with which it is unnecessary to trouble the reader. 
Mr. Anderson was at length settled in Glasg<iw in 
1720, although it appears from M'Ure's Histcry 
that the North-west Church, to which he was aji- 
pointed, was not founded till 172 1, nor finished for 
"a year or two thereafter." Mr. Anderson did not 
long survive his call to CJlasgow. — the date of h;-- 
death has not been ascertained, but his success' ir 
was apjjointed in 1723. His controversial writing's 
are full of valuable historical informauon, and show 
him to have been thoroughly versed in theiil"^';i:a! 
literature, but it cannot be too much regretted tl'.it 
he so far indulged in intemperate langu.ige. ^^ e 
have not alluded to some (if his smaller ] ani] hicts. 
which refer merely to subjects ol a tenir'^iary i. r 
local nature. 

Upon the family tombstune, erected by tr.o w:d 
of Professor .Vnderson, over the gr-ive ■>; !;;s i^'r.ir.'l- 

' WodtiTivs liist.^ry, new e-iiti ;:. v_I. i. p. Xa\. 



40 



JOHN ANDERSON. 



father, upon the front of the North-west Church, 
Glasgow, was inscribed tlie following memorial of 
Mr. Anderson: — "Near this place ly the remains of 
the Rev. John Andei-son, who was preceptor to the 
famous John, Duke of Argylc and Greenwich, anil 
minister of the gospel in Dumbarton in the beginning 
of the eighteenth centur)-, and in this church in the 
year 1 720. Me was the author of Tlu' Dt-feitcc of the 
Church-i^irtL-rttmcHt, Faith, Worship, and Spirit of 
the Presbyterians, and of several other ecclesiastical 
and political tracts. As a pious minister and an 
eloquent preacher, a defender of civil and religious 
lil>erty, and a man of wit and learning, he was much 
esteemet.1; he lived in the reign of Charles II., James 
II., William III., .-\nne, and tieorge I. .Such times, 
and such a man, forget not, re.ider, while thy country, 
liberty, and religion are dear to thee." 

ANDERSON, John, F.R.S., professor of na- 
tural philosojihy in the university of Glasgow, and 
founder of the eminently useful institution bearing 
his name in that city, was born in the parish of 
Roseneath, in Dumbarton>hire, in the year 1726. 
He wxs the eldest son of the Rev. James Anderson, 
minister of Roseneath, who was, in his turn, the eldest 
son of the Rev. John .\nderson, ]ireceptor to John, 
Duke of .Xrgyle, afterwards minister of the gospel at 
Dumbarton, and of whom a notice is given in the 
preceding article. The subject of tliis memoir, 
having the misfortune to lose his father in early life, 
was educated by his aunt Mrs. Turner, widow of one 
of the ministers of the High Church of .Stirling. 
While residing at this town, where he received the 
rudiments of learning, he ap])eared as an officer in 
the burgher cor])s raised in Februan.-, 1746, to defend 
it against the forces of the young Chevalier. His 
conduct on this occasion was worthy of his dis- 
tinguished ancestor, from whose example he appears 
to have derived that attachment to the jirinciples of 
civil and religious lilierty which markecl his charac- 
ter through life. The carbine and other arms which 
he carried on the walls of .Stirling are ])reserved in 
the mu>eum connecte<l with his institution at (ilas- 
gow. He received the more advanced part of his 
education at the college of tilasgow, where, in 1756, 
he was aj)pointed professor of oriental languages, 
being then in the thirtieth year of his age. 

It was not in this s])here that Mr. .Vnderson was 
destined to shine with greatest lustre. His mind had 
a decided bent towards the exact sciences, and to the 
illustration of the arts with which they are connected. 
His translation, therefore, to tlie cliair of natural 
philoso])hy, which took place in 1760, was highly 
agreeable to him, and also most fortunate for the 
world. While he took an early opportunity, after 
this event, to fulfil an important ])rivate dutv, bv 
repaying his aunt for the expensfs of his education, 
he enterefl upon the business of his class with an 
enthusiastic ardour of ajiplication, which wi- may 
safely pronounce to have been without examjilc in 
any Scottish university. .\ot contented with the 
ordinary duty of delivering a course of kxtures - 
though he ])erforme'l that duty in a mantier alone 
.sufficient to ol)tain distinction lie was in<l(.fatigal)le 
in studying and exem])lifying the applic.ition of 
science to mechanical practice; visiting, for this 
purpose, the worksho])S of arti/ans in the town, and 
receiving, in return for the scientific doctrine which 
he had to communicate, a fiill cjuivalent of exjjcri- 
mental knowledge. The most estimable charaLtir- 
istic of Professor .Anderson, was a liberal and dift'usivc 
benevolence in regard to the instructifin of his race. 
Under the inspiration <jf a feeling, which was in tli.it 
a^'o more rare, and therefore more meritorious, than 



it is at present, he instituted, in addition to his usual 
class, which was strictly mathematical, one for the 
working-classes and others whose pursuits did not 
enable them to conform to the prescribed routine of 
academical study, illustrating his precepts by experi- 
ments, so as to render it in the highest degree 
attractive. He continued to teach this anti-toga 
class, as he called it, twice every week, during the 
session, to the end of his life; and it would not be 
easy to estimate the amount of good which he thus 
rendered to his fellow-creatures. As an instance of 
the liberal good sense by which he was governed in 
his eminently useful scheme, it is related that a 
mechanic having complained to his assistant, that he 
had scarcely time, after leaving his work, to change 
his dress before coming to the class, and having 
suggested the propriety of the operatives being 
allowed to attend without such change, Mr. Anderson 
at once acceded to it. His was a mind too strongly 
bent on mere usefulness to regard empty form. 
Yet, as a lecturer, he is allowed to have himself 
exhibited a surpassing elegance of manner. His 
style was easy and graceful, his command of language 
unlimited, and the skill and success with which his 
manifold experiments were performed could not be 
surpassed. He excited the interest and attracted 
the attention of his pupils, by the numerous and 
appropriate anecdotes with which he illustrated and 
enlivened his lectures. Enthusiastic in his pro- 
fession, his whole ambition and happiness consisted 
in the dissemination of useful knowledge; and nothing 
afforded him purer pleasure than hearing that any of 
his pupils had distinguished themselves in the world. 
The only distinct work which he published in con- 
nection with his favourite science, was a valuable 
one, entitled Institutes of Physics, which appeared 
in 1786, and went through five editions during the 
next ten years. 

At the commencement of those political changes 
in France which ended in such unhappy results, 
Mr. Anderson, from his ardent and liberal character, 
was among those who sympathized with the pro- 
ceedings of the emancipated people. Previous to 
that period, he had invented a species of gun, tlie 
recoil of which was stopped by the condensation of 
common air within the l)ody of the carriage. Hav- 
ing in vain endeavoured to attract the attention of 
the British government to this invention, he went to 
Paris, in 1791, carrjing with him a model, which 
he presented to the national convention. The 
governing party in France at once perceived the 
benefit which would be derived from this invention, 
and ordered Mr. Anderson's model to be hung u]) in 
their hall, with the following inscription over it — 
"Tin-; (iiKT OK SciE.NCE TO LiiiEKTY." Whilst he 
was in France, he got a six-]50under made from his 
model, with which he made numerous experiments 
in the neighbourhood of Paris, at -which the famous 
Paul Jones, amongst others, was ]iresent; and who 
gave his decided approbation of the gun, as likely 
to ])rove highly useful in landing troops from boats, 
or firing from the round tops or poojis of ships of 
war. Mr. Anderson, at this period, took a keen 
interest in the transactions which passed before his 
eyes. He was present when Louis XVI. was 
brought back from \'arennes; and on the 14th of 
July, on the toj) of the altar of liberty, and in the 
presence of half a million of Frenchmen, he sang 
'/;• /Jeiirn with the Pishop of Paris, when the king 
look the oath to the constitution, amen being said 
to the ceremony by the discharge of 500 ])ieces of 
artillery. .As the Emperor of Germany had drawn a 
military cordon around the frontiers of France, to 
prevent the introduction of French newspapers into 



JOHN ANDERSON ROBERT ANDERSON. 



41 



Germany, he suggested the expedient of making 
small balloons of paper, varnished with boiled oil, 
and filled with inflammable air, to which newspapers 
and manifestoes might be tied. 'I'his was accord- 
ingly practised, and when the wind was favourable 
for Germany, they were sent off, and descending in 
that country, were, with their appendages, picked 
up by the people. They carried a small (lag or 
streamer, inscribed with a motto, of which the 
following is a translation: — 

*' O'er hills and dales, and lines of hostile troops, I float 
maiestic, 
Bearing the laws of God and Nature to oppressed men, 
And bidding them with arms their rights maintain." 

Mr. Anderson died, January 13th, 1796, in the 
seventieth year of his age, and the forty-first of his 
professorship, directing by his will, dated May 7th, 
1795, ^'^^^ '^^ whole of his effects, of every kind, 
should be devoted to the establishment of an educa- 
tional institution in Glasgow, to be denominated 
Anderson's University, for the use of the unacademi- 
cal classes; so that, even while he was consigned to 
the silent dust, he might still, by means of his 
honourably acquired wealth, prove of service to those 
whom he had benefited so much, during his own 
life, by personal exertion. His will was carried into 
effect on the 9th of June following, by the magistrates 
granting a charter of incorporation to the proposed 
institution. According to the design of the founder, 
there were to be four colleges — for arts, medicine, 
law, and theology — besides an initiatory school. 
Each college was to consist of nine professors, the 
senior professor being the president or dean. As 
the funds, however, were inadequate to the plan, it 
was at first commenced with only a single course of 
lectures on natural philosophy and chemistry, by Dr. 
Thomas Garnett, well known for his numerous 
scientific and medical works, and also for his Tour 
t/iroiigh the Ilii^hlanJs and part of the Western Isles 
of Scotland. This course was attended for the first 
year by nearly looo persons of both sexes. In 
1798 a professor of mathematics and geography was 
appointed. The splendid apparatus and library of 
the founder, which were valued at ;i^3ooo, added 
greatly to the advantages of the infant institution. 
In 1799 Dr. Garnett, being appointed professor in 
the Royal Institution at London, was succeeded by 
the eminent Dr. Birbeck, who, in addition to the 
branches taught by his predecessor, introduced a 
familiar system of philosophical and mechanical 
information to 500 operative mechanics, free of 
all expense, thus giving rise to mechanics' institu- 
tions. The .Andersonian Institution was placed, by 
the will of the founder, under the inspection and 
control of the lord-provost, and many other honour- 
able persons, as ordinary visitors, and under the 
more immediate superintendence of eighty-one trus- 
tees, who are elected by ballot, and remain in office 
for life. Since the first establishment of the univer- 
sity, as it may very properly be called, it has gradually 
been extended nearer and nearer to the original 
design of the fiunder. There are now fifteen pro- 
fessors, who deliver lectures on surgen,-, institutes of 
medicine, chcmi>lry, practical chemistry, midwifery, 
practice of me<licine, anatomy, materia medica, 
}iharm.icy and dietetics, medical jurisprudence and 
police, mathematics, natural ])hilosophv, botanv, 
'•^^.^'^'t K^''-^''^P''>'t niodern languages, English litera- 
ture, drawing and painting, i\;c. The institution 
now possesses handsome and commodious buildings, 
which belong to the corporation, and, among other 
additions to its means of cultivating and illustrating 
science, is an extensive museum of natural history- 



and antiquities. Anderson's University must be con- 
sidered a wonderful example of the amount of gfxxl 
which one man, of no very great material resources, 
may do for his kind. The private fortune of one 
professor in the original college of Glasgow has here 
been found sufficient to produce a new fount of learn- 
ing, not unworthy to rank with the old, and of very 
great practical utility to the public. 

A posthumous work of Professor Anderson, en- 
titled Observations on Roman Antiquities betu.ieen 
the Forth and Clyde, appeared in 1 804. 

ANDERSON, Robert, M.D., the biographer 
of Smollett and Johnson, was bom on 7th of Jai.uary, 
1750, and was the son of a feuar in the rural village 
of Carnwath in Lanarkshire. He received the 
earlier part of his education in his native place, and 
in the adjacent village of Libberton; was subsecjuently 
placed under the tuition of Mr. Robert Thomson, 
master of the grammar-school of Lanark; and finally 
studied in the university of Edinburgh, where he 
commenced attendance upon the divinity class, with 
the view of becoming a clergjman. He took the 
degree of M.D. at St. Andrews in 1778. In his 
early years, when pursuing his studies at Carnwath, 
he could find but one congenial mind in the whole 
of that rural district; this was an unfortunate yfiuth, 
named James Grreme, the son of a neighbour, \\ ho, 
after exhibiting considerable powers as a poet, died 
in his twenty-second year, and whose reliques were 
afterwards included by Dr. Anderson, more perhaps 
through the influence of friendship than deliberate 
taste, in his edition of the British Poets. Dr. Ander- 
son first entered into practice as surgeon to the 
dispensary of Bamborough Castle in Northumber- 
land; he afterwards removed to Alnwick, where he 
married Miss Gray, daughter of Mr. John Gray, a 
relation of the noble family of that name. The 
declining state of his wife's health, which rendered 
a change of air necessary, induced him, in 17S4, to 
remove to Edinburgh, where he ever afterwards 
resided. He had here the misfortune to lose his 
amiable partner, who sank under a consumption, 
leaving him with three infant daughters. Dr. 
-Vnderson having secured a small independence, 
practised no more after this period, but engaged in 
such literary avocations as he felt to be agreealjle t'o 
his taste, and became the centre of an agreeable 
coterie, in which the talents of many a youth of 
genius were for the first time brought into notice. 
About the year 1793 he began to prepare his edition 
of the British Poets, which forms thirteen volumes, 
large octavo, and appeared between the years 1795 
and 1807. To the works of each poet is prefixed a 
biographical memoir by Dr. Anderson. In 1793 
he married for his second wife Miss Dale, daughter 
of Mr. David Dale, schoolmaster in East Lothian. 
.\ collection of the works of Smollett, by l)r. .Ander- 
son, with a memoir prefixed, has gone through ei^ht 
editions. To the last edition is atVixed a I:ighiy 
characteristic likeness of the editor. The nien^'ir 
has been published repeatedly in a distinct sli.i] e. 
and is a very respectable production. Dr. .\n':er-o!i 
also published a Life of Dr. .Siimnel je/: >:.■,':. :.■:.''': 
Critical Obsci-tatioiis on his ITivks, whieh lia- j ."i--e>l 
through several editions. For se\'ei:\l year- i'e;-re 
the end of the eighteenth century. Dr. .\ii<;ei-:. was 
editor of the B.dnibur.;h Ma^az:ih\ a r:\ai "t the 
Scots ^[t^^az:ln\ more varied and lively in i> 'irMiis. 
and which afforded him an opportunity ot I :;:-.!!g 
forward the productions ot his young trie;'.>!-. 1 ;:> 
work commenced in the year 17S4. .an! at the end 
of 1S03 was incoqtorated with the .^■, . .V .I/,.-. ,.•:.■ ?.•■•■ .' 
it w.is much indebted to its propriety 'r.Janxs >:l;ba!'.l. 



<- 



T. G. TORRY ANDERSON 



WALTER ANDERSON. 



editor of the Chronicle of Scottish Poetry, to Lord 
Hailes, and other eminent literary characters. 
Among the publications which Dr. Anderson gave 
to the world, must be included his edition of the 
Works of John Moore, M.D., ■zcith Memoirs of his 
Life and U'ritim^s, Edinburgh, 1S20, 7 vols. 8vo; 
and an edition of the poems of Robert Ulair, Eilin- 
burgh, 1S26, l2mo. The great incident of Dr. 
Anderson's literary life was his connection with the 
commencement of the career of Thomas Camiibell. 
When Campbell first visited Edinburgh in 1797, 
being then in his twentieth year, he gained the 
friendship of Dr. Anderson, who, on being shown a 
copy of elegiac verses, written by him two years 
before, when an obscure tutor in Mull, predicted 
his great success as a poet. It was through Dr. 
Anderson, in 179S, that Camjibell was introduced 
to the circle of his distinguished literary associates in 
Edinlnirgh; and he it was who encouraged him by 
his friendly advice, and assisted him by his critical 
acumen, in the jiublication of his celebrated poem, 
the /'/i\r'i/res of Hope, for the high character of 
which he had, previously to its ajipearance, pledged 
his word to the pul)lic. In acknowledgment of his 
friendship, the grateful jioet dedicated his work to 
Dr. An<lerson. During the later years of his life, 
this venerable author, though he indulged as much 
as ever in literarj' society, gave no w^rk to the 
public. 

Asa literary critic. Dr. Anderson was distinguished 
by a warm sensibility to the beauties of poetrj', and 
by extreme candour. His character as a man was 
marked by perfect probity in all his dealings, and 
unshaken constancy in friendship. Ills manner was 
lively and bustling; and from his long-continued 
acquaintance with the literary world, he possessed 
an unrivalled fund of that sjiecies of gossip and 
anecdote which gives so much pleasure in Boswell's 
Life of Johnson. 

Dr. Anderson died of dropsy in the chest, 
February 20, 1S30, in his eighty-first year. 

ANDERSON. Rev. T. C. Torkv. This clerical 
])oet. tlie son of the Rev. I'atrick Torry, D.D., titu- 
lar Hishop of St. .\n(irews, Dunkeld, and Dunblane, 
was born at I'eterhead on the 9th of July, 1805. 
Having l)ecn taught the elements of learning at the 
]iiri>h school of I'eterhead, he afterwards became a 
student in .Mari>chal College, .Aberdeen, and the 
university of Edinburgh. He was admitted into 
holy orders in 1S27. as minister of St. John's Epis- 
copal church. I'ortobello; afterwards became assis- 
tant in St. (ieorge"s E])iscoi)al chapel, Edinburgh; 
ami finally was transferred to the ministerial charge 
of St. I'aid's Epi>copal church, Dundee. This 
charge he was obliged to resign in 1855, in conse- 
'juence of bad health; an<l after this period he resided 
on his estate of Eawside, Kincardiiie~.hire, t(j wliich 
he had succecdi-d in 1S50, in consequence of the 
death of Dr. \'oung, his maternal uncle. Mr. 
.Anfler^on died at .Alicrdeen on the 20tli of lune, 
I.S56. He was three time-, married, and left at lii^ 
death a widow and six children. .Although he dili- 
gently fultilled the duties of his sacred office, .Mr. 
.Anderson was better known by his songs than hi-, 
sermon^, some of which attained a wide popularitv, 
especially those entitled "The .Araby Maiil," " The 
.Maiden's Vow." and "I love the Sea." the music as 
well as the words of the-e la>t two songs being lii-, 
own com])ONition. It was a union of the musical 
and poetical in the same mind, which, however 
common among the poet^ of the classical, and niin- 
Nirels of the medieval ages, is verv seldom foiiml 
among the bards and song-makers of our own day, 



and is therefore the more worthy of notice and com- 
mendation. Mr. Anderson was also an extensive 
C(mtributor to L'oetical Lllustrations of the Achieve- 
ments of the Duke of Wellington and his Companions 
in Arms, published in 1852. 

ANDERSON, Walter, D.D. The era of this 
gentleman's birth is unknown; he died at an advanced 
age, July, 1800, after having been minister of the 
l)arish of Chirnside for fifty years. He is a remark- 
able specimen of that class of authors who, without 
the least power of entertaining or instructing their 
fellow-creatures, yet persist in writing and publishing 
books, which nobody ever reads, and still, like the 
man crazed by the lottery, expect that the next, and 
the next, and the next will be attended with success. 
Perhaps Anderson's cacoethes scribcfidi received its 
first impulse from the following ludicrous circum- 
stance. His parish comprehending the house of 
Xinewells, he was often entertained there, in com- 
]iany with the brother of the proprietor — the cele- 
brated David Elume. The conversation having 
turned one day on the success of Mr. Hume as an 
author, Anderson said, "Mr. David, I dare say 
other people might write books too; but you clever 
fellows have taken up all the good subjects. When 
I look about me, I cannot find one unoccupied." 
Hume, who liked a joke upon an imsuspecting 
clergj'man, said, "What would you think, Mr. 
Anderson, of a history of Croesus, King of Lydia? — 
that has never yet been written." Air. Anderson 
was delighted with the idea, and, in short, "upon 
that hint he wrotcP Li 1755 was published the 
History of Crccsns, King of Lydia, in four parts; con- 
taining Observations on the ancient notion of Destiny 
or Dreams, on the origin and credit of the Oracles, 
and the Principles upon which their Oracles were 
defended against any attack. What is perhaps the 
best part of the jest, the work was honoured with a 
most serio-burlesque notice in the first Edinburgh 
Kei'icw, then just started by Hume, Smith, Carlyle, 
and other wits — the article being written, we have no 
doubt, by the very man who incited the tudiappy 
author to his task. 

The LListory of Crcesits was also the subject of a 
critique in the second number of the Critical A'eT'iczc, 
which had then been just started in London by 
Smollett. The article in the latter periodical liears 
such evident marks of the pen of the distinguished 
editor, and refers to such an extraordinary work, that 
we shall make no apology for the following extracts. 

After remarking that the volume has been chiefly 
compiled from the episodes of Herodotus, that it 
exhibits a miserable flatness of style, and that all the 
facts scattered throughout its 235 pages might have 
been related in three or four, the critic proceeds to 
say — "We are apt to believe that this is the first 
essay of some young historian, who has been more 
intent ujion forming his style and dis])laying his 
learning, than careful in digesting his jilan and com- 
bining his materials; the subject is too meagre to 
afford nourishment to the fancy or understanding; 
and one might as well attemjn to build a first-rate 
man-of-war from the wreck of a fishing-boat, as to 
com]iose a regular history from such a scanty ])arccl 
of iletarhed oliservations. The com])iler has been 
aware of this deficiency, and has filled up his blank 
]iaper with unnecessary argument, and a legion of 
eternal truths, by way of illustration. What could 
be more unnecessary, (or examjile, than a detail of 
reasons for doubting the divinity or da'moniacism of 
the ancient oracles? Who believes, at this time of 
day, that they were either insjiired by the deity or 
iiitluciiced by the tlevil? What can be more super- 



WALTER ANDERSON WILLIAM ANDERSON. 



fluous than a minute commentary and investigation 
of the absunlities in the plea of the priestess, when 
she was taxed with falsehood and equivocation? 
But we beg the author's pardon; he wrote for readers 
that dwell beyond the Tweed, who have not yet 
renounced all commerce with those familiar spirits, 
which are so totally discarded from this part of the 
island. There is still a race of soothsayers in the 
Highlands, derived, if we may believe some curious 
antiquaries, from the Druids and Bards, that were 
set apart for the worship of Apollo. The author of 
the history now before us may, for aught we know, 
be one of these venerable seers; though we rather take 
him to be a Presbyterian teacher, who has been used 
to expound apothegms that need no explanation."- 

The History of Crcesus, King of Lydia, one of the 
most curious productions recognized in the history 
of literaty mania, is now extremely rare — not by 
any means from the absorbing appreciation of the 
public, but rather apparently from the very limited 
extent of its first circulation. 

The worthy author, though perhaps daunted a 
little by the reception of his first attempt, in time re- 
covered the full tone of his literary ambition; and he 
next attempted a work of much larger compass, which 
appeared in 1769, in two quarto volumes, under the 
title of the History of France durin;^ the Reii:;ns of 
Francis //. and Charles IX., to which is prefixed 
a review of the General History of the Monarchy 
from its origin to that period. The success of this 
work was much like that of its predecessor ; yet in 
1775 the author published a continuation in one 
volume, under the title. The History of France, from 
the commence/nent of the reign of Henry ///., and the 
rise of the Catholic League, to the peace of Worms and 
the establishment of the famous Edict of Xantes in the 
reign of Henry IV. In 1783 appeared two further 
volumes, embracing the history from the commence- 
ment of the reign of Louis XIIL to the general peace 
of Munster. But these continuous efforts were not 
drawn forth by the encouragement of the public; 
they were solely owing to the desperate cacoethes of 
the worthy writer, which would take no hint from 
the world — no refusal from fame. It is said that he 
was solely enabled to support the expense of his 
unrequited labour by a set of houses belonging to 
himself in Dunse (too appropriate locality I), one of 
which was sold for every successive quarto, till at 
last something like a street of good habitable tene- 
ments in that thriving town was converted into a 
row of unrea(lal)Ie volumes in his library. "Dr. 
Anderson, "says the Gentleman'' s Magazine, "displays 
none of the essential qualities of historic writing, no 
research into the secret springs of action, no discri- 
mination of character, and no industry in accumulat- 
ing and examining authorities. Even as a compiler 
he is guided only by one set of materials which he 
found in the French writers, and may therefore be 
Lon-.ultcd l)y the English reader, as a collection of 
their oj.inions, while he is highly censurable in not 
having recourse to original papers and documents re- 
>pectingtheatTairsof hisowncountrj-. His styleis uni- 
formly tame, and defaced by colloquial barbarisms." 

In a liicrLiry hi>tory of this deplorable character, 
it is gratifying to find that one elfort was at length 
judged worthy of some praise. This was a work 
sub>equcnt to the above, entitled The Philosophy of 
.Indent Creeee iinestigated. in its origin and progress, 
f' the era ^ of its greatest cele/'rity, in the Ionian, Italic, 
and .■Itheiiian Schools, n'lth remarks on the delineated 
tystem of t'lcir founders. His principle in this work, 
according to the authority ju>t quoted, a]->pears to 
have iiecn " to sup]ily thedeficiencies in Mr. Stanley's 
work, antl to give place to remarks upon the mean- 



ing employed by the most eminent Grecian philo- 
sophers, in support of their physical, theological, and 
moral systems ; and to give a fuller and more con- 
nected display of their theories and arguments, and 
to relieve the frigidity of their bare details by inter- 
spersing observations." In this work he displavs 
much learning, and is in general both accurate and 
perspicuous, although he is still deficient in the 
graces of style. Perhaps it would have Ijcen mcjre 
successful had it not appeared at the same time 
with Dr. Enfield's excellent abridgment of Brucker's 
History of Philosophy. 

One of the last attempts of Dr. Anderson was a 
pamphlet against the principles of the French Re- 
volution. This being not only written in his usual 
heavy style, but adverse to the popular sentiments, 
met with so little sale that it could scarcely be said 
to have been ever published. However the doctor 
was not discouraged; adopting rather the maxim, 
"contra audentior ito," he wrote a ponderous addi- 
tion or appendix to the work, which he brought with 
him to Edinburgh, in order to put it to the press. 
Calling first upon his friend Principal Robertsf)n, 
he related the whole design, which, as might be ex- 
pected, elicited the mirthful surprise of the venerable 
historian. "Really," said Dr. Robertson, "this is 
the maddest of all your schemes — what I a small 
pamphlet is found heavy, and you propose to lighten 
it by making it ten times heavier ! Never was such 
madness heard of!" "Why, why," answered Dr. 
Anderson, "did you never see a kite raised by boys?' 
"I have," answered the principal. "Then, you 
must have remarked that, when you try to raise the 
kite by itself, there is no getting it up : but only add 
a long string of papers to its tail, and up it goes like 
a laverock I" The reverend principal was completely 
overcome by this argument, which scarcely left him 
breath to reply, so heartily did he laugh at the in- 
genuityof the resolute author. However, we believe, 
heeventuallydissuaded Dr. Anderson from his design. 

ANDERSON, William. This poet and mis- 
cellaneous writer was bom in the end of December, 
1805. He originally studied for the law, but insteail 
of entering the profession of a lawyer, he made the 
dangerous choice of authorship, and adhered to it 
for the rest of his life. It was unfortunate that tlris 
choice was made at so early a period, as his excel- 
lent natural talents were not directed by a literary 
education or extensive reading, by which he miglit 
have won both distinction and success. Having 
thrown himself into the tide with all the generous 
enthusiasm of youth, he was borne along in its whirl, 
antl in the career that awaited him it was much that 
he was enabled to keep his head above water, and 
educate his family for a life of respectaliility and 
comfort. As a literary adventurer thus circum>tance(;. 
he was ever)'thing by turns — editor or sub-ediinr I'l 
newspapers, publi.-hers' literary assistant, conqiik-r 
or author of histories and biograidiies, or occa>inn.i:!y 
publishing a work at his own ri>k ; while lii> s]'l;eie 
of ojieration in these ditTerent capacities was Mine- 
times London, sometimes Edinburgh, and occasicn- 
ally the provincial towns of England and Scitland. 
Like many in a similar situation, he had ik^ iniie; er.- 
dent choice either of locality for hi> rt-si'ici'.ce > r 
subject for his pen, and in both ca>e> wa- .ir;i;c! t" 
and fro by the re(]uiremenis (it tlie pre^s ir tr.e i;:- 
gagement oi his ]iubli>her. But l)ra\ely ;.c \"-:g' x 
out this battle of life fmm youth to ol,! a;.;e: rin>; lncp. 
when his body was racked out of f. .mi ! y .t:: t\- 
cniciating malady that had \\a>te'l \:'.\v. I'ir year-, 
and when his mmd was cmbitterei ly eMr-:e.u:- 
ring diiaj po:ntmcnt, he wai ;t;ll i:.iu-:;;-U.-, ^ti.l 



44 



ALEXANDER ARBUTHNOT JOHN ARBUTHXOT. 



ready for a fresh attempt in authorship, and still 
hopeful of the result. Even those who knew no- 
thing of him save his indomitable perseverance, won- 
dered that it could still make head against such ad- 
verse circumstances. Visited at last by heart disease, 
the inevitable consequence of a body so distorted by 
rheumatism, he had nevertheless gone to London by 
sea, when he died suildenly on the 2tl of .\ugust, 
lS66, being a few days after his arrival there, and 
was buried in the cemetery of Highgate. 

The last and also the largest and best work writ- 
ten by Mr. .\nderson, and the one througii which 
his name will longest survive, is that called The Scot- 
tish Xitlhut, publisheii by the Messrs. Lullarton, 
Edinburgli, in three large volumes im|X'rial 8vo. 
It is not only a biographical record of eminent Scots- 
men, but a history of the Scottish clans and dis- 
tingui>he<.l families, and contains a mass of valuable 
information, which the author was em])loyed many 
years in collecting. Li all his multifarious ]5rose 
writings, although most of them were written for the 
day and upon the spur of urgency, Mr. .Anderson's 
style was always distinguished by its elegance and 
correctness, its clearness and force. Under hajipier 
circumstances, it was evident from these tiiat he 
might have held a distinguishetl place in aulhorsliip. 
In conversation his wit was remarkable, whether 
telling a >tor\- or making an observation, and it as- 
sumed every variety of character from the light 
and comic to the caustic and severe. Poetry, 
however, had been the chief object from the 
beginning of Mr. .Anderson's literary affections, and 
he only abandoned it with reluctance, when the ex- 
jierience of years showed him that it was an unpro- 
fitable resource, except to those who had leisure and 
talent to reach the loftier summits of I'arnassus. 
Mis chief poetical publicaticjns were a small vc^lume 
of short poems and songs written in early life — 
among which are some of high merit, so that they 
have been published in some of our best popular col- 
lections; and /,</;/ </j-<77/(' Lyrics, written in matured 
life, and which he always regarded as the best of his 
poetical productions. 

ARBUTHNOT. Ai.kx andkr, an eminent divine 
of the reign of James VI., son of tiie laird of 
.\rbuthnot, was born in the year 1538. Having 
studied langu.ages and i)hilos((])l)y in the university 
of .\i)erdecn, ami civil law under the famous Cujacius 
at K'lurgL-. in France, he took ecclesiastical orders, 
and became in Imn own country a zealous sup])orter 
of the Reformation. The period of his entrance into 
public life was 1563. when <^)ueen Mary was in ])os- 
se>'>:on of the kingdom. His eminent aijilities ?.w.\ 
ac<|uirements jjointed him out, young as he was, as a 
leading man iMlheciuirch, and accordingly hu took a 
j)rominent jiart in several (icneral .Asst-iibiics. In 
that of 156S he was ai)pointed Ijv his brctlnen to 
examine a work entitled ///,• Ai/I of t/ir h'omau 
Church, which was ol)jccted to because it stvled the 
king the head of the church. The result' of his 
deliberations was an order to linssandv iir, the 
l)rinter, not to jirint any mure books till lie ha,! ex- 
punged this passage, and also taken awav a lewd 
song which he had published at the en<l of :ui edition 
of the I'salnis. Tlie assembly also ordered that 
henceforth no book should be ]nil.li~hed till licenced 
by their commission. '•Tims," it has been n-- 
marke 1, "the reformed cler.^y, who owed their 
emancii).ation to the right of j.r.vate judgment, with 
strange inconsistency obstructed tlie progress of free 
inquiry by taking upon th.emselves the regulation of 
the press." 

Arbuthnot was soon after aj •pointed niini-.ter of 



the parishes of Arbuthnot and Logie-Euchan, and 
in 1569 he became principal of the university of 
Aberdeen. He was a member of the General 
Assembly held at St. Andrews in 1572, in which 
strenuous o])position was made to a scheme of church- 
government called the Book of Policy, which was 
invented by certain statesmen, at the head of whom 
was the Regent Morton, to restore the old titles of 
the church, and by means of titular incumbents, 
retain all the temporalities among themselves. In 
the General Assemblies held at Edinburgh in 1573 
and 1577, Arbuthnot was chosen moderator; and he 
apjiears to have been constantly employed, on the 
l^art of the church, in the commission for conduct- 
ing the troublesome and tedious contest with the 
regency concerning the plan of ecclesiastical govern- 
ment to be adopted in Scotland. This commission, 
under the name of the Congregation, at length 
absorbed so much power, that the assembly was 
left little to do but to approve its resolutions. The 
]mrt which Arbuthnot took in these affairs gave 
offence to James VI., and the offence was increased 
by the publication of Buchanan's History, of which 
Arbuthnot was tijc editor. It was therefore resolved 
to restrain him by an oppressive act of aibitraiy 
]5ower; and a royal order was issued, forbidding 
him to absent himself from his college at Aberdeen. 
The clergy, who saw thcrt the design of this order 
was to dejirive thein of the benefit of Arbuthnot's 
services, remonstrated: the king, however, remained 
inflexible, and the clergy submitted. This persecu- 
tion probably affected Arbuthnot's health and spirits; 
for the next year, 1583, he fell into a gradual 
decline and died. Arbuthnot appears to have 
possessed much good sense and moderation, and to 
have been well cpialified for public business. His 
knowledge was various and extensive; he was a 
patron of learning; and at the same time that he was 
active in promoting the interests of the reformed 
church, he contributed to the revival of a taste for 
literature in Scotland. The only prose production 
which he has left, is a learned and elegant Latin 
work, entitled Orationcs de Orii:;inc ct Dignitate 
Juris [Orations on the Origin and Dignity of the 
Law], which was printed in 4to at Edinburgh in 
1572. Tor some specimens of vernacular ])oetry, 
supposed to be his composition, we may refer to 
Irving's Lives of tlie Scottish Poets, and M'Crie's 
IJfe of A iidrciv JlLeh'ille. His character has received 
a lasting eulog)-, in the shape of an e])itaph, from 
tile pen of his friend Melville. See Dclititc Poctaruvi 
Scotoruiii, ii. ]). 120. 

AUBUTHNOT, John, M.D., one of the con- 
stellation of wits in the reign of Queen Anne, and 
the most learned man of the whole body, was the 
son of a .Scottish clergyman, who bore a near rela- 
tionshi]^ to the noble family of this name and title. 
lie was born at Arbuthnot in Kincardineshire, soon 
after the Restoration, and received his education at 
the uni\ersitv of Aberdeen, where he took the 
degree of .M.l). The father of Arbuthnot was one 
of those niendiers of the Church of .Scotland who, 
not being able to comply with the Presbyterian 
system introduced at the Revolution, were obliged to 
resign tlieir charges. He retired to a small estate, 
which h(_- ])ossessed bv inheritance; while his sons, 
finding ilu-ir prosjiects blighted in their own couiitn-, 
were under the necessity of going abroad to seek 
their fortune. John carried his Jacobitism, his 
talents, and his knowledge of physic to London, 
uhere he at first subsisted as a teacher of mathe- 
matics. 11;., first literary effort bore a reference to 
tliia science: it was an Exaiuinatwn of Dr. Wood- 



JOHN ARBUTHNOT. 



45 



ward's Account of the Deluge, a work which had 
been published in 1695, and which, in Dr. Arbuth- 
not's estimation, was irreconcilable with just philo- 
sojjhical reasoning upon mathematical principles. 
This publication, which appeared in 1697, laid the 
foundation of the author's literarj' reputation, which 
not Ion;,' after received a large and deserved increase 
by his /Cssay on the Usefulness of Mathematical 
Leariiinj:^. The favour which he acquired by these 
publications, as well as by his agreeable manners 
and learned conversation, by degrees introduced him 
into practice as a physician. Being at Epsom when 
Prince George of Denmark was suddenly taken ill, 
he was called in, and had the good fortune to effect 
a cure. The prince immediately became his patron, 
and in 1709 he was appointed fourth physician in 
ordinary to the queen (Prince (George's royal consort), 
in which situation he continued till her majesty's 
death in 1714- I" 1704 Dr. Arlnithnot had been 
elected a member of the Royal Society, in conse- 
quence of his communicating to that body a most 
ingenious paper on the equality of the numbers of 
the se.xes; a fact which he proved by tables of births 
from 1629, and from which he deduced the reason- 
able inference that polygamy is a violation of the 
laws of nature. In 1 7 10 he was elected a member 
of the Royal College of Physicians. 

This was the happy period of Dr. Arbuthnot's 
life. Tory principles and Torj' ministers were now 
triumphant; he enjoyed a high reputation, a lucrative 
practice, and a most honouraljle preferment; he 
also lived in constant intercourse with a set of literary 
men, almost the greatest who had ever flourished in 
England, and all of whom were of his own way of 
thinking in regard to politics. This circle included 
Pope, Swift, Ciay, and Prior. In 17 14 he engaged 
with Pope and Swift in a design to write a satire 
on the abuse of human learning in every branch, 
which was to have been executed in the humorous 
manner of Cervantes, the original inventor of this 
species of satire, under the history of feigned adven- 
tures. -But the prosecution of this design was pre- 
vented by tiie queen's death, which lost .Arbuthnot 
his situation, and proved a death-blow to all the 
political friends of the associated wits. In the 
dejection which befell them, they never went farther 
than an essay, chiefly written by Arbuthnot, under 
the title of the First BooJk of the Memoirs of Marfiniis 
Scriblerus. "Polite letters," says Warburton in his 
edition of Pope's works, "never lost more than in 
the defeat of this scheme, in the execution of wliich, 
each of this illustrious triumvirate would have fiund 
exercise for his own particular talents; besides con- 
stant employment for those which they all had in 
common. Dr. Arbuthnot was skilled in everything 
which related to science; Mr. Pope was a master in 
the tine arts; and Dr. Swift excelled in a knowledge 
1)1 tiie world. Wit they had in equal measure; and 
this so large, that no age perhaps ever pro(luce<l 
three men to whom nature had more bountifully be- 
.-toweil it, or art had brought it to higher perfection."' 
We are told by the same writer that the Travels 
of Gill! r:r TiwA \\\m Memoirs of a Parish Clerk Wiixc 
at first intended as a branch of the Memoirs of 
Scriblerus. In njiposition to what Warburton says 
of tlie design, we may ]ire>ent what lolmson savs of 
the execution. "These memoirs," says the doctor, 
in his lite of Pojh', "extend only to the first ]\"irt of 
a work projected in concert liy Pope, .'~^wift, and 
Arbutlinot. Their iiurp<i^e was to censure the 
abuse> of learning liy a tictitiou-. life of nn infatuated 
scholar. Tliey were dispersed; the design never 
was complete 1: and Warhurton laments its mis- 
carriage, aj an evci'it xcry ili^a-truus to iv.lite letter-. 



If the whole may be estimated by this specimen, 
which seems to be the prfxluction of Arbuthnot, 
with a few touches by Pojjc, the want of more will 
not Ijc much lamented; for the fjUies which the 
writer ridicules are so little practised, that they are 
not known; nor can the satire Ix; understood but bv 
the learned. He raises phantoms of absurdity, and 
then drives them away. He cures diseases that 
were never felt. For this reason, this joint pnxluc- 
tion of three great writers has never attained anv 
notice from mankind." With the opinion of Dr. 
Johnson we entirely coincide, so far as the Scriblerus 
is concerned; but we think that Arbuthnot was 
unfortunate in the part of the design which he 
selected, and that, in satirising more jialpable follies, 
he might have been more successful. The success 
of Swift, in ridiculing mankind in general in his 
Gulli-L'er, is surely a sufficient reason, if no other ex- 
isted, for the lamentation of Warburton. 

At the death of the queen, when it pleased the 
new government to change all the attendants of the 
court, the immortal suflered with the mortal; Arl)uth- 
not, displaced from his apartments at St. Jame^', 
took a house in Dover street, remarking philosophi- 
cally to Swift that he "hoped still to be able to keej) 
a little habitation warm in town." His circumstances 
were never so prosperous or agreeable after this 
period. With the world at large, success makes merit 
— the want of it the reverse; and it is perhaps im- 
possible for human nature to think so highly of a man 
who has been improperly deprived of some external 
mark of distinction and honour, as of him who 
wears it without so much desert. The wit, left to 
his own resources, and with a rising family to 
support, seems to have now lived in some little 
embarrassment. 

In 1 71 7 Arbuthnot, along with Pope, gave assist- 
ance to Gay, in a farce entitled "Three Hours after 
Marriage," which, strange to say, was condemned 
the first night. A rival wit wrote upon this subject: — 

" Such were the wags who boldly did adventure 
To club a farce by tripartite indenture; 
But let them share their dividend of prai-e. 
And wear their own fool's cap instead of bays." 

In 1722 Dr. Arbuthnot found it necessar}- for his 
health to indulge in a visit to Bath. He was accom- 
panied on this occasion by a brother who was a 
banker at Paris, and whose extraordinaiy character 
called forth the following striking description from 
Pope: "The spirit of philanthropy, so hmg dead to 
our world, seems revived in him: he is a ]>hilosopher 
all fire; so warmly, nay so wiMly, in the right, that 
he forces all others about him to be so too. and 
draws them into his own vortex. He i> a star that 
looks as if it were all on fire, but is all benignity, 
all gentle and beneficial influence. If there be otlur 
men in the world that woukl serve a friend. }et !:e 
is the only one, I l)elieve, that could make even an 
enemy serve a friend."' About this time, tlie I'.octi'r 
thus described himself in a letter to Swifi: ••.V- l". r 
your humble servant, with a great >tone in h> ri.:!:'. 
kitlney, and a family of nu-n and w.,me;i to jh-ovkIc 
for, he is a- cheerfid in public atT.Tir- a- ever. " 

.Arbuthnot. in 1723. wa- cho-cn -eco:v! ccn-or o! 
the Royal College of I'liyr-ician-; v.\ \:z- he u_..- 
made an Elect, and had the honour to ;ii< r.- ui^c tl'.c 
Harveian oration fir l!ie ycc.r. 1 r. 17-7 "■■~' "T" 
]>eared his great and learned woik, <.:;;::; 1 .■■■•< 
rf Aiieioit ("■.■;;/. ll\:\''':f.'. ,:;/./ .l/:",;.;;' . r- ■:.::;::./ 
and cxcmrlf.J .■>: /.v,;-.:/ l'::srr-.-f: :: - W- con- 
tinued to pr.icti-e |)hy-:c with go...i i-: ■::.:.:.■ ••:i.Jir/\ 
diverted h> lei-iire hoin^ tiywr;:;:,^ i ,-; ■ r- -f w it 
au'.i liumuur. Aino;;- ihc-c r^.v ; ^. v.\'^\.\:- v.^:' : i_.n(., 



45 



JOHN ARBUTHNOT. 



wliich appeared in 1731, in the shape of an epitaph 
upon the infamous Colonel Charteris, and which we 
shall present in this place as perhaps the most 
f.ivourable specimen of Dr. Arhuthnot's peculiar vein 
of talent: — 

"Here continueth to rot the body of Francis 
Charteris, who, with an inflexible constancy, and 
inimitable uniformity of life, persisteil, in sjiite of 
age and infirmilies, in the practice of every human 
vice; excepting prodigality and hypocrisy; his in- 
satiable avarice exempted him from the first, his 
matchless impudence from the second. Xor was he 
more singular in the undeviating pravity of his man- 
ners, than successful in accumulating wealth; for, 
without trade or profession, without trust of jjublic 
money, and without bribe-worthy service, he ac- 
quire<i. or more properly created, a ministerial estate. 
He was the only ]>erson of his time who could cheat 
with the mask of honesty, retain his jirimeval mean- 
ness when possessed of ten thousand a year, and, 
having daily deserved the gibbet for what he did, 
was at last condenuied to it for what he could not 
do. — OhI indignant reader! Think not Ids life use- 
less to mankind I Providence connived at his exe- 
crable designs, to give to after-ages a conspicuous 
proof and cxamjile of liow small otimation is exor- 
l)itant wealth in the sight of (jod, by his bestowing 
it on the most unworthy of all mortals."' 

Arbuthnot, about this time, wrote a verj' enter- 
taining paper on the Altcrcalioits or Scolding of the 
AtuUnts. In 1 732 he contributed towards detecting 
an<l ])uni»hing the scandalous frauds and abuses that 
had been carried on under the specious name of 'J'hc 
C/iaritak'i Corporation. In the same year he pub- 
])lished his Treatise on the Xatiire and Choice of Ali- 
ments, which was followed, in 1733, by his Essay on 
the Effects of Air on I/uman Eodies. lie is thought 
to have been led to these subjects by the considera- 
tion of his own case — an asthma, which, gradually 
increasing wiili his years, became at length desper- 
ate and incurable. \ little liefore his last publica- 
tion, he had met witli a severe domestic affliction in 
the l')>s of his son Charles, "whose life," he says in 
a letter to .Swift, "if it had so ])leased God, he 
would willingly have redeemed with his own." He 
now retired in a state of great debility to Hampstead; 
from whence, in a letter to l'o|)e, July 17th, 1734, he 
gives the following philosophic, and we may add, 
touching, account of his condilicjn: — 

" I have little dnubi of your concern fjr nic, nor 
of that of tlie lady yf)u mention. 1 have nothing to 
repay my friend.-, with at present, but prayers and 
good wishes. I have tlie satisfactiun to find that I 
am as officiously served by my friends, as he that 



' Tliis pnr.i;; .n of wickeilnt-ss, who was a native f.f Scotlaiul, 
\s thii-s c!<;scriU.-.i l.y l',,pc. hut wi: hclicvc-. as in the tjiitaph 
ilsclf. wilii iiui. h i:xa^^";rati..n. " I-ranui^ Charteris, a man 
infamous f,r all vices. When ho was an en-.|;;n in the .'irjir.-. 
he was rlrutnine'l out r,f the rejjirnent f.r a cheat; he was 
Innishc'i linissels, anl tnrne'i <nit of (Ihent. on the .s.une 
;icc unit. After a humlre'l Irieks at the K^i'iiiiiK-tahles, he 
t .ok to Icniiin;; of n}oney at ex.rliitant interest, au.l on },reat 
pcn.iltlcs. at;' innnlatin;; premium. inti;rest, .au'l capital i)ito .a 
new capit-il. and sel/ni^ t la minute when the jiavnient hecame 
(hie; in a w-.r.!. hy a constant altcntion to the vices, wants, 
anj f 'Hies of niankinii, he .ici|iiire'l an immense fjrtune. 
He was twice condemnc-l f .r n.pes an.l juriloned, hut the last 
time not without imprisoiunent in .\ewy;itc. and lar^e (.onfisc;!- 
tions. Hcdijdin .Scotl.ind in 17 u.a;;ed sivty-two. 'the populace-, 
at his funeral, raised .a js're;it not, almost tore the l.oily out of 
the coffin, and cist dead do;;s. ."ic, into t)ie v,r:i\-<- alon- u,th 
it." \Vc may add that the mourners h.id to defend them^clvc-s 
from the niolj with tlieir swi,rds. See '/ r,t,/iti,'ns /'/ l-'.iint- 
iurgh. One rcmarkahlc feature of C:harteris' ch;iracter is not 
;;cnerally known: thou;,;h a hullv and .1 coward, he h.ad his 
li^'hting days; he would suffer himself t. Ihj kicked f .rrcfusiu.; 
a fhallengc one day, and the next would acc.pt another and 
]:ilt tiis man. 



has thousands to leave in legacies; besides the assur- 
ance of their sincerity. God Almighty has made 
my distress as easy as a thing of that nature can be. 
I have found some relief, at least sometimes, from 
the air of this place. My nights are bad, but many 
poor creatures have worse." 

In a letter about the same time to Swift, he says 
he came to Hampstead, not for life, but for ease. 
That he had gained in a slight degree from riding ; 
but he was "not in circumstances to live an idle 
country life ;" and he expected a return of the dis- 
order in full force on liis return in winter to London. 
He adds, "I am at present in the case of a man that 
was almost in harbour, but was again blown back 
to sea; who has a reasonable hope of going to a 
good jilace, and an absolute certainty of leaving a 
very bad one. Not that I have any jjarticular 
disgust at the world, for I have as great comfort in 
my own family, and from the kindness of my friends, 
as any man; but the world in the main displeaseth 
me; and I have too true a presentiment of cala- 
mities that are like to befall my country. However, 
if I should have the happiness to see you before I die, 
you will find that I enjoy the comforts of life with 
my usual cheerfulness. . . . My family give 
you their love and service. The great loss I sus- 
tained in one of them gave me my first shock; and 
the trouble I have with the rest, to bring them to a 
good temper, to bear the loss of a father who loves 
them, and whom they love, is really a most sensible 
affliction to me. I am afraid, my dear friend, we 
shall never see one another more in this world. I 
shall, to the last moment, preserve my love and 
esteem for you, being well assured that you will 
never leave the ])aths of virtue and honour for all 
that is in the world. This world is not W'orth the 
least deviation from that w^ay," &c. In such a strain 
did this tndy good man discourse of his own certain 
and immediate death, which accordingly took place. 
February, 1735, in his house, Cork Street, Burling- 
ton Gardens, to which he had returned from Hamp- 
stead at the approach of winter. 

Arbuthnot's character was given by his friend 
Swift in one dash: "He has more wit than we all 
have, and more humanity than wit." " ArlDuthnot," 
says Ur. Johnson in his life of Pope, "was a man of 
great comprehension, skilful in his profession, versed 
in the sciences, acquainted with ancient literature, 
and able to animate his mass of knowledge by a 
bright and active imagination; a scholar with great 
brilliancy of wit; a wit who, in the crowd of life, re- 
tained and discovered a noble ardour of religious zeal." 
Lord Orrery has thus entered moremiinitely into his 
character: "Although he was justly celebrated for 
\\\\. and learning, there was an excellence in his 
character more amiable than all his other qualifica- 
tions, I mean the excellence of his heart. He has 
shown himself equal to any of his contemporaries in 
wit and vivacity, and he was sujierior to most men 
in acts of humanity and benevolence. His very sar- 
casms arc the satirical strokes of good nature: the\- 
are like slaps in the face given in jest, the effects of 
wliicli may raise blushes, l)ul no blackness will a]i- 
]H.-ar after the blow. He laughs as j(n'ially as nn 
attendant upon I'acchus, but continues as sober and 
considerate as a rlisci])le of .Socrates." 

'i'he wit, to which Swift's was only allowed the 
second ])lace, was accompanied by a guileless heart, 
aii<l tJK' most ]icrfect sim])Iicity of character. It is 
rt-lated of its ])ossessor, that he used to write a hum- 
orous account of almost every remarkable event 
which fell under his observation, in a folio book, 
which lay in his ]iarlour; but so careless was he about 
\\\s writings after he was done with them, that, 



JOHN ARMSTRONG. 



47 



while he was writing towards one end of this work, 
he would permit his children to tear out the leaves 
from the other, for their paper kites. This care- 
lessness has prevented many of the works of Dr. 
Arbuthnot from being preserved, and no correct list 
has ever been given. A publication in two volumes, 
8vo, at Glasgow, in 1 751, professing to be his Mis- 
cellaneous Works, was said by his son to consist 
chiefly of the compositions of other people. He was 
s ) much in the habit of writing occasional pieces 
anonymously, that many fugitive articles were erro- 
neously attributed to him: he was at first supposed 
to be the author of Robinson Crusoe. He scarcely 
ever spoke of his writings, or seemed to take the 
least interest in them. He was also somewhat in- 
dolent. Swift said of him, that he seemed at first 
sight to have no fault, but that he could not walk. 
Besides this, he had too much simplicity and worth 
to profit by the expedients of life: in Swift's words, 

" He knew his art, but not his trade." 

Swift also must be considered as insinuating a certain 
levity of feeling, with all his goodness, when he says, 
in anticipation of his own death, 

" Poor Pope will grieve a month, and Gay 
A week, and Arbuthnot a day I" 

though the haljitual cheerfulness of his disposition 
may have been all that the poet had in his eye. 
The only other work ascertained as Arbuthnot's, 
besides those mentioned, is the celebrated Ilistorv 
of John Bull, a political allegory, which has had 
many imitations, but no equal. He also attempted 
poetr)', though without any particular effort. A 
philosophical poem, of his composition, entitled 
" rXQei 2:EATT0N" [Know Yourself], is printed 
in Dodsley's Miscellanies. I f e left a son, George, 
who was an executor in Pope's will, and who died 
in the enjoyment of a lucrative situation in the ex- 
chequer oflke towards the end of the last centur)-; 
and a daughter, Anne, who was honoured with a 
legacy by Pope. His second son, Charles, who died 
before himself, had been educated in Christ Church 
College, Oxford, and entered into holy orders. 

ARGYLE. .See Campbell. 

ARMSTRONG, John, M.D., author of the 
well-known poem entitled The Art of Presenung 
Health, was born, about 1709, in the parish of 
Castleton, Roxburghshire, where his father and 
brother were successively ministers. He might 
almost be styled a poet by right of birthplace, for 
the parish of Castleton is simply the region of 
Liddesdale, so renowned for its heroic lays, the 
records of deeds performed by the Border reivers, 
among whom the family of the poet bore a distin- 
guished rank. The rude and predatory character 
of this (li>irict had, however, jiassed away l)efore 
tlie commencement of the eighteenth centur\-; and 
young Armstrong, though his lullabies were no 
doubt those fine ol<l i)all.-ids which have since been 
published by Sir Walter Scott, seems to have drawn 
from them but little of his inspiration. It was .is 
yet the fashion to look upon legendary verses as only 
fit for nurses an<i children; and nothing was thought 
worthy of the term ])oetry, unless it were presented 
in trim artificial langii.ige, after the manner of some 
distinguished classic writer. It is therefore bv no 
means surprising that .Armstrong, though born and 
cradled inalancl full of beautiful traditionarv* jioetn-, 
looked upon it all, after he had become an eilucateil 
man, as only Doric trasli. and found his Tcni]>e 
in the bowers of Twiekenliani instead of the lor.clv 
heaths of Liddesdale. 



Being educated for the medical profession at the 
university of Edinburgh, under the elder Monro, 
Armstrong, in 1732, took his degree as M.D. with 
much reputation, the subject of his treatise being 
7'abes I'urulenta. He had ere this period addicted 
himself to the composition of verses. We are in- 
formed that, to relieve the tedium of a winter spent 
in "a wild romantic country" — probably Liddcs<lale 
— he wrote what he intended for an imitati<jn of 
Shakspeare, but which turned out to resemble 
rather the poem of Winter, then just published by 
Thomson. The bard of the Seasons, hearing of 
this composition, which so strangely and so accitlent- 
ally resembled his f)wn, procured a sight of it bv 
means of a mutual friend, and, being much jileaseii 
with it, brought it under the notice of .Mr. David 
Mallet, Mr. Aaron Hill, and Dr. Young, all of 
whom joined with him in thinking it a work of 
genius. Mallet even requested the consent of the 
author to its publication, and undertook that duty, 
though he afterwards gave up the design. 

Armstrong was probably led by this flattering 
circumstance to trj' his fortune in London, where his 
countrymen Thomson and Mallet had already gained 
literary distinction. In 1735 he is found publishing, 
in that capital, a humorous attack upon empirics, in 
the manner of Lucian, entitled^;/ Essay for Abridg- 
ing the Study of Physic, to which is added, A Dialogue 
betwixt Hygeia, ]\Iercury, and Pluto, relating to the 
Practice of Physic, as it is managed by a certain 
illustrious Society; and an epistle from Usbeck the 
Persian to Joshua Ward, Esq. The essay, besides 
its sarcastic remarks on quacks and quackery, con- 
tains many allusions to the neglect of medical edu- 
cation among the practising apothecaries; but the 
author had exhausted his wit in it, and the dialogue 
and epistle are consequently flat and insi])id. In 
1737 he published a serious professional piece. 
styled A Synopsis of the History and Cure of tin 
Venereal Disease, 8vo, inscribed in an ingenious 
dedication to Dr. Alexander Stuart, as to "a person 
who had an indisputable right to judge severely fif 
the performance presented to him." He probably 
designed the work as an introduction to practice in 
this branch of the medical profession; but it was 
unfortunately followed by his poem entitled 7 hi 
Economy of Lore, which, though said to have l)een 
designed as merely a Inirlesque ujion certain didactic 
writers, was justly condemned for its wann and 
alluring pictures, and its tendency to inflame the 
passions of youth. It appears by one of the "cascs 
of literar}- property," that Andrew Millar, the book- 
seller, paid fifty pounds for the cojiyright of th:s 
poem; a sum ill-gained, for the work greatly dim- 
inished the rcputati(jn of the author. After it lir.l 
passetl through many editions, he published (>ne, :n 
1768, in which the youthful luxuriances that linl 
given offence to better minds were carefully prune'!. 
Hut the otTence had l)een already jierpetrateii, ?^:.': 
it was too late to undo it. 

In 1744 Dr. .\rmstning made -^'ine amende !" r 
this iiKliscretion, h)- ])ulilishing 7>)e .Irt cj J^r,:'-- 
ing Health, a didactic j^oein in hi ink verse, exteni:- 
ing through four books, each of wliiih contains ,■ 
particular l>raiich of the sul>iect. This very nur;- 
torious work raised liis re]uit.-;tii 'ii t> a heiglii wi:', :. 
his subsequent e'Vur;- ,-carcely si-.-t.-iinci. It - 
written in a taste which wi.nilil not iV'W lie C' :'.-;• :i. re ; 
very pure or elegant ; hut yet, when tliesuhn: ."i.i 
the age are considered, there is ania/-ii^L;ly l.fi.e ;■' 
lie condemned. Dr. Warton lias lu-tly ren.aike ; 
the refined terms in wliicli the i">et. ,~:t ;Iie c:;d "! :• ~ 
third IvH.k, lias described an Iji-i.-h ;.:a^;:e. t" the 
, tV.'teenth ceritury. ei.t.tled "llie swe.-.;;:.g -ic.^;.i.--. 



48 



JOHN ARMSTROXC:. 



"There is a classical correctness and closeness of 
style in this poem," says Dr. Warton, "that are tnily 
admirable, and the subject is raised and adorned by 
numberless poetical images." Dr. Mackenzie, in his 
History of Health, bestowed similar praises on this 
poem, which was indeed everywhere readand admired. 

In 1741 Armstrong solicited the patronage of Dr. 
Bircli, to be appointed physician to the llect then 
about to sail for the West Indies; but he does nitt 
seem to have obtained the object of his desire. In 
1746, when established in reputation \is\\\'i Art of 
Prcsen-'.Hi; Htaith, he was appointed one of the 
physicians to the hospital for lame and sick soldiers 
ix-hind Buckingham House. In 175 1 he published 
his poem on Bcitei'olcnci; in folio, a prtxluction which 
seems to have come from the heart, and contains 
sentiments which could have been expressed with 
ct]ual ardour only by one who felt them. His Taste, 
an EptstU tea Youit^ Critic, 1753, 4to, is a lively and 
spirited imitation of Pope, and the first production 
in which Armstrong began to view men antl manners 
with a splenetic eye. His next work was less meri- 
torious. It was entitled Skt-tc/ws or Essays on I 'arioiis 
Sufijcvts, and appeared under the fictitious name of 
Lancelot Temiile, Ksq. The critical cxaniinators 
of Dr. Armstrong's merits allow to this work tlie 
credit of exhibiting much humour and knowledge of 
the world, but find it deformed by a perjK-tual flow 
of affectation, a struggle to say smart tilings, and, 
above all, a disgusting repetition of vulgar oaths and 
exclamations — forms of expression to which the poet, 
it seems, was also much addicted in conversation. 
In some of these sketches, Armstrong is said to have 
had assistance from the notorious John Wilkes, with 
whom he lived in habits of intimacy; but it is certain 
that the contributions of this gentleman cannot have 
been great, as the work is mucli inferior to the 
literary style of the demagogue of Ayleslnir}', who, 
whatever might be his moral failings, is allowed to 
have had a chaste clas?.ical taste, and a pure vein of 
humour. 

Armstrong had sufficient professional interest in 
1760 to oi)tain the appointment of physician to tlie 
army in Germany. From that country he wrote 
/)i!y, a Poem, addressed as an epistle to John Wilkes, 
Esij. This lively ]iiece, which professes to embody 
an account of all the proper indulgences, moral and 
physical, of twenty-four liours, was, it is said, pub- 
li>lied in an imiK-rfect shape, by some clandestine 
editor. It was never adtled to tlie collected works 
of Dr. Armstrong till Dr. Anderson admitted it into 
hi-, edition of the Jyritish Poets. After the jieace of 
1763, Dr. .\rm>trong returned to London, and re- 
sumed his practice, but with no e.ager desire of iii- 
crea-iing the moderate conijietency he now enjoyed. 
He continued after tliis period ratlier to an.Uic than 
to exert him-.elf in literary productions, chietlv s|)end- 
ing his time in the society of men of wit and taste 
like iiim>elf In 1771 he made a tour into france 
and Italy, in conijiany witli the ttlehrated Lusi'li, 
who survived lijm for nearly fifty years, and always 
>poke higliiy of Dr. .Armstrong's amiable character. 
In Italy lie took a temler farewell of liis friend 
Smollett, to whom he was much attached, and wiio 
elied soon after. On returning home he pid)lisliecl 
an account of his travels, under the name (jf /.nine- 
lot Temple. 

The latter years of Dr. Armstrong's life were 
embittered by one of those ([uarrels which, arising 
between pcr>ons fjrmerly much attached, aie at 
once the most envenomed and the most productive 
of uneasiness to the jjarties. In his poem of Day, 
he had asked, among other things, 

" What cra;ry scribbler reigns the iircscnt wii?" 



which the poet Churchill very properly took to him- 
self, and resented in the following passage in his 
poem of 'Phe Journey: — 

" Let them with Armstrong, taking leave of sense, 
Read musty lectures on Benevolence; 
Or con the pages of his gaping Day,^ 
Where all his former fame was thrown away, 
Where all but barren labour was forgot, 
And the vain stiffness of a lettered Scot; 
Let them with Armstrong p.ass the term of light. 
Hut not one hour of darkness; when the night 
Suspends this mortal coil, when memory wakes, 
Wlien for our past misdoings conscience takes 
A deep revenge, when by reflection led 
She draws his curtains, and looks comfort dead, 
Let every muse be gone; in vain he turns. 
And tries to pray for sleep; an Etna burns, 
A more than Etna in his coward breast. 
And guilt, with vengeance armed, forbids to rest; 
'though soft as plumage from young Zephyr's wing. 
His couch seems hard, and no relief can bring; 
Ingratitude hath planted daggers there, 
No good man can deserve, no brave man bear." 

We have no hesitation in saying that this severe 
satire was not justified either by the offence which 
called it forth or by the circuinstances on which it 
was founded. Wilkes, the associate of Churchill, 
had lent money to Armstrong on some occasion of 
]:)eculiar distress. When the attacks of Wilkes upon 
Scotland led to animosities between the two friends, 
it was not to be expected that the recollection of 
a former obligation was necessarily to tie up the 
natural feelings of Dr. Armstrong, and induce him 
to submit rather to the certain charge of meanness 
of spirit, than the possible imputation of ingratitude. 
Neit' er could Wilkes have fairly expected that the 
natural course of the quarrel was to be stayed by 
such a submission on the part of his former friend. 
It would have been equally mean for the obliged 
party to have tendered, and for the obliging party 
to have accepted, such a submission. There can be 
no doubt, therefore, that Dr. Armstrong, in giving 
way to resentment against Wilkes, was chargeable, 
properly, with no blame except that of giving way 
to resentment; and if it is to be supposed, from the 
character of the poet in respect of irritability, that 
the resentment would have taken place whether 
there had been a debt of kindness standing undis- 
charged between the parties or not, we cannot really 
see how this contingent circumstance can enhance 
his offence. 

There is unfortunately too great reason to su]i]50sc, 
that if the obligation tended to increase the blame 
of either parly, it was that of Wilkes, who, from 
almost incontestable evidence, ajipears to have made 
a most ungenerous use of the advantage he had ac- 
quired over his former friend. Not only must he bear 
a ])ortion of the guilt of Churchill's satire, which 
could have only been written as a transcri)>t of his 
feelings, and with his sanction, but he stands almost 
certainly guilty of a still more direct and scurrilous 
attack u])on Dr. Armstrong, which a]i]ieared in a 
much more insidious form. This ^\•as a series oi 
articles in the well-known Public Adi'ertiscr, com- 
mencing willi a letter signed J)ies, whicli appeared 
to proceed from an enemy of the patriot, but, in the 
ojiinion of Dr. Armstrong, was written by the ])atriot 
Inmself 

.\rnistrf)ng died at his house in Kussel Street, 
('')vent (ianlen, September 7, 1779, in consequence 
of an aeciilental contusion in his thigh, received 
while getting into a carriage. He was found, to the 
siir])rise of the world, to have saved the sum of 
;^2000 (uit of his moderate income, which for many 

' 'Wn-. ))'n;m was fall of l.irgj hiatus iUliplicd by asteriiks. 



HUGO ARNOT. 



49 



years had consisted of nothing more than his half- 
pay. 

Dr. Armstrong was much beloved and respected 
by his friends for his gentle and amiable dispositions, 
as well as his extensive knowledge and abilities; but 
a kind of morbid sensibility preyed upon his temper, 
and a languid listlessness too frequently interrupted 
his intellectual efforts. With Thomson's Castle of 
fndolctice he is appropriately connected, both as a 
fiijure in the piece and as a contributor to the verse. 
l"he following is his portraiture:— 

With him was sometimes joined in silent walk 

(Profoundly silent -for they never spoke , 
One shyer still, who quite detested talk; 

Oft stung by spleen, at once away he broke. 
To groves of pine, and broad o'ershadowing oak, 

There, inly thrilled, he wandered all alone. 
And on himself his pensive fury wroke: 

He never uttered word, save, when first shone 
The glittering star of eve—' ' Thank heaven! the day is done 1" 

His contributions consist of four stanzas descriptive 
of the diseases to which the votaries of indolence 
finally become martyrs. 

The rank of Dr. Armstrong as a poet is fixed by 
his Art of Pn-scrvini^ Health, which is allowed to be 
among the best didactic poems in the language. It 
is true this species of poetry was never considered 
among the highest, nor has it been able to retain its 
place among the tastes of a modern and more refined 
age. Armstrong, however, in having improved 
upon a mode of composition fashionable in his own 
time, must still be allowed considerable praise. 
"His style," according to the judgment of Dr. Aikin, 
"is distinguished by its simplicity — by a free use of 
words which owe th'eir strength to their plainness — 
by the rejection of ambitious ornaments, and a near 
approach to common phraseology. His sentences 
are generally short and easy; his sense clear and 
obvious. The full extent of his conceptions is taken 
in at the first glance; and there are no lofty mysteries 
to be unravelled by a repeated perusal. What keeps 
his langiiage from being prosaic, is the vigour of his 
sentiments. lie thinks boldly, feels strongly, and 
therefore expresses himself poetically. When the 
•subject sinks, his style sinks with it; but he has for 
the most part excluded topics incapable either of 
vivid description or of the oratory of sentiment. 
He had from nature a musical ear, whence his lines 
are scarcely ever harsh, though apparently without 
much study to render them smooth. On the whole, 
it may not be too much to assert, that no writer in 
blank verse can be found more free from stiffness and 
affectation, more energetic without harshness, and 
more dignified without formality." 

ARNOT, Ilrr.o, a historical and antiquarian 
writer of tlie eighteenth century, was the son of 
a merchant and ship-jiroprietor at Leith, where he 
was l)orn, December 8th, 1749. His name originally 
was I'ollock, which he changed in early life for 
.\rnot, on falling heir, through his mother, to the 
estate of H.ilcorino in Fife. As "Hugo Arnot of 
IJalcornio, I'.-q.." he is entered as a member of the 
Kaculty of .Vdvocates, December 5, 1772, when ju^t 
about to complete his twenty-third year. Previous 
to this period he had had the misfortune to lose his 
father. Another evil which befell him in early life 
was a settled a'-thma, the result of a severe cold 
which he caught in his fifteenth year. As this dis- 
order was always aggravated by exertion of anv kind, 
it became a serious ohstniction to his progress at the 
bar: some of his jileading-^. nevertheless, were mucli 
admired, and obtained for him the ajiplause of the 
bench. Perhaps it was this interruption of his ]iro- 

VuL. I. 



fessional career which caused him to turn his atten- 
tion to literature. In 1779 apix-ared \\\s History 0/ 
Edinburgh, I vol. 410, a work of much research, 
and greatly superior in a literary ]>oint of view to 
the generality of local works. The styk* of the 
historical part is elegant and epigrammatic, with 
a vein of causticity highly characteri^^tic of the 
author. From this elaborate work the author is 
said to have only realized a few pounds of ))rofit; 
a piratical impression, at less than half the price, 
was published almost simultaneously at Dublin, and, 
being shipped over to .Scotland in great quantities, 
completely threw the author's edition out of the 
market. A bookseller's seeoiid edition, as it is called, 
appeared after the author's death, being simply the 
remainder of the former stock, embellishe«l with 
plates, and enlarged by some additions from the j>en 
of the publisher, Mr. Creech. Another edition was 
published in 8vo, in 1817. 

Mr. Arnot seems to have now lived on terms of 
literar)' equality with those distinguished literary and 
professional characters who were his fellow-towns- 
men and contemporaries. He did not, however, for 
some years, publish any other considerable or acknow- 
ledged work. He devoted his mind chiefiy to local 
subjects, and sent forth numerous pamphlets and 
newspaper essays, which had a considerable effect in 
accelerating or promoting the erection of various 
public works. The exertions of a man of his public 
spirit and enlarged mind, at a time when the capital 
of Scotland was undergoing such a thorough reno- 
vation and improvement, must have been of material 
service to the community, both of that and of all 
succeeding ages. Such they were acknowledged to 
be by the magistrates, who bestowed upon him the 
freedom of the city. We are told that Mr. Arnot. 
by means of his influence in local matters, was able 
to retard the erection of the South Brhf^e of Ediii- 
burgh for ten years — not that he objected to such an 
obvious improvement on its own account, but only 
in so far as the magistrates could devise no other 
method for defraying the expense than by a tax upon 
carters; a mode of liquidating it which Mr. Arnot 
thought grossly oppressive, as it fell in the first place 
upon the poor. lie also was the means of prevent- 
ing for several years the formation of the present 
splendid road between Edinburgh and Leith, on 
account of the proposed j)lan (which was afterwards 
unhappily carried into effect) of defraying the expense 
by a toll; being convinced, from what he knew of 
local authorities, that, if such an exaction were once 
established, it would always, on some pretext or 
other, be kept up. 

In 1785 Mr. Arnot published A CoILrtiou rf 
Celebrated Criminal Trials in Scotland, 7cith Histeri- 
eal and Critieal Remarks, I vol. 4to; a work of ]ier- 
haps even greater research than his History oj I-.dni- 
burgh, and written in the same acutely metajihy^ical 
and epigrammatic style. In the front <.if thi> vohup.e 
appears a large list of subscribers, embracing almo-t 
all th J eminent and considerable person^ in Scotlaiiil._ 
with many of those in England, and testifying ot_ 
course to the literary and personal rc^jiectaliility oi 
Mr. Arnot. This work appeared without a ]".;!'- 
lisher's name, probably for some rea-on cor.r.ectei 
with the following circumstance. < )\v:!ig jHvh.''.]- 
to the unwillingne-s of the author to all' iw a >\:i:;cier.t 
profit to the booksellers, the whole 1>. -iy ot ti.at 
trade in Edinburgh refu>ed to let tlie >ui -cri| :;■ -n 
pay)ers and pro^ju^ctuses hang in tluir -r.i'!-: .'-r 
which reason the author anu'vancc'l. I'y ir.t,u> ot an 
advertisement in the new-paper-, tliat tiu-e r.rt.Lit- 
might lie >een in the cotTee-b' 'U-e-. Mr. .\r;i"l re- 
ceived the sum of -ix luilidred po;;:i(I> ! •r \\v: c oie^ 



so 



HUGO ARXOT- 



SIR ROBERT AYTOX. 



sold of this work, from which he would have to pay 
the expenses of printing a tliin quarto: it thus hap- 
pened that what was rather the least laborious of his 
two works was the most profitable. 

Mr. Arnot only sur\'ived the publication of his 
Criminal Trials about a twelvemonth. The asthma 
had ever since his fifteenth year been making rapid 
ailvances upon him, and his person was now reduced 
almost to a shadow. While still young, he carried 
all the marks of age, andaccortlingly the traditionarj' 
recollections of the historian of Ktlinburgh always 
))oint to a man in the extreme of life. Perhaps no- 
thing could indicate more expressively the miserable 
state to which Mr. Arnot was reduced by this disease, 
than his own halfdudicrous, half-pathetic exclama- 
tion, on being annoyed by the bawling of a man 
selling sand on the streets: "The rascal I" cried 
the unfortunate invalid, "he spends as much breath 
in a minute as would ser\e me for a month I" Among 
the portraits and caricatures of the well-known John 
Kay may be found several faithful, though somewiiat 
exaggerated, memorials of the emaciated i^erson of 
Hugo Arnot. As a natural constitutional result of 
this disease, he was exceedingly /leii'oits, and liable 
to be discomposed by the slightest annoyances: on 
the other hand, he possessed such ardour and intre- 
pidity of mind, that in youth he once rode on a 
spirited horse to the end of tiie ])ier of Leith, while 
the waves were dashing over it and every beholder 
expected to see him washed immediately into the sea! 
<)n another occasion, having excited some hostility 
by a political pamphlet, and being summoned by an 
.anonymous foe to ajipcar at a j^articular hour in a 
lonely }iart of the King's Park, in order to fight, he 
went and waited four hours on the spot, thus perilling 
his life in what might have been the ambuscade of a 
deadly enemy. By means of the same fortitude of 
character he beheld the gradual ap]>roach of death 
with all the calmness of a Stoic philosopher. The 
m.agistrates of Leith had acknowledged some of his 
public services by the ominous compliment of a piece 
i>{ ground in their churchyard ; and it was the 
recreation of the last weeks of Mr. Arnot's life to go 
every day to observe the prfjgress made by the work- 
men in prejjaring tiiis place for his own recc]5tion. 
It is related that he even expressed considerable 
anxiety le><t his demise should take ])kace before the 
melancholy work shoulil be completed. lie died 
Novend)er 20th, 17S6, when on tlie point of com- 
pleting his thirty-seventh year; that age so fatal to 
men of genius that it may almost be styled their 
climacteric. He was interred in the tomb fitted up 
by himself at .South Leilh. 

Besides his historical and local works, he had 
puljlished, in 1777, a fancifiil metapliysical treatise, 
entitled Xothiii;;, which was originally a ]iaper read 
before a \\ ell-known (h.-liating-tiul) styled the Specu- 
lative Society; being probably suggested to him bv 
the poem of the I-Larl of KuchesUr on the equally 
impalj)able sui)ject of S/!,>ir,\ If any disagreeable 
reflectifin can rest on .Mr. .ArnoTs mcmorv for the 
free sco])e he has given to his niinil in this little 
essay — a freedom saiictioneil, if not exc\isL'd, by the 
taste of the age -he nnist be lii.-M to have made all 
the amends in his jiowcr by the jiroprii-t v of his 
deportment in later life; when lie entered heartily 
and regularly into the observances of the Scot- 
tish I'.piscojial communion, to which Ik- originally 
belonged. If .Mr. .\rnot was anything decidedly in 
politics, he was a Jacobite, to which paity he be- 
longed by descent and by religion, and also perhaps 
by virtue of his own peculiar turn of miml. In 
modern politics he was quite independent, judging 
all men and all measures bv no other standard tlian 



their respective merits. In his professional character 
he was animated by a chivalrous sentiment of honour 
worthy of all admiration. He was so little of a 
casuist, that he would never undertake a case unless 
he were j^erfectly self-satisfied as to its justice and 
legality. He had often occasion to refuse employ- 
ment which fell beneath his own standard of honesty, 
though it might have been profitable, and attended 
by not the slightest shade of disgrace. On a case 
being once brought before him, of the merits of 
which he had an exceedingly bad opinion, he said 
to the intending litigant, in a serious manner, " Pray, 
what do you suppose me to be?" " Why," answered 
the clietit, " I understand you to be a lawyer." " I 
thought, sir," said Arnot sternly, " you took me for a 
scoundrel." The litigant, though he perhaps thought 
that the major included the minor proposition, 
withdrew abashed. Mr. Arnot left eight children, 
all very young; and the talent of the family appears 
to have revived in a new generation, viz. in the 
person of his grandson, Dr. David Boswell Reid, 
whose ElcDiotts of Chemistry has taken its place 
amongst the most useful treatises on the science, 
and who was selected by government, on account of 
his practical skill, to plan and superintend the ven- 
tilation of the new houses of parliament, in the 
prosecution of which object he for several years 
conducted the most costly and prolonged, if not the 
most successful, experiment of the kind ever made. 

AYTON, Sir Robert, an eminent poet at the 
court of James VI., was a younger son of Andrew 
Ayton of Kinaldie, in Fife, and was born in the 
year 1570- From the registers of St. Andrews uni- 
versity, it appears that he was incor]:)orated or en- 
rolled as a student in St. Leonard's College, De- 
cember 3, 1584, and took his inaster's degree, after 
the usual course of study, in the year 1588. Sub- 
sequently to this, he resided for some time in France; 
whence, in 1603, he addressed an elegant panegyric 
in Latin verse to King James, on his accession to 
the crown of England, which was printed at Paris 
the same year; and this panegyric had no doubt 
some influence in securing to the author the favour 
of that monarch, by whom he was successively ap- 
pointed one of the gentlemen of the bed-chamber, 
and ]3rivate secretary to his queen, Anne of Denmark, 
besides receiving the honour of knighthood. He 
was, at a later period of his life, honoured with the 
a]ipointment of secretary to Henrietta Maria, (piecn 
of Charles I. It is recorded on Ayton's funeral 
monument, as a distinction, that he had been sent 
to Germany as ambassador to the emperor, with a 
work published by King James, which is supposed 
to have been his Apolo;^v for the Oatli of Alli-i^nauce. 
\i this conjecture be correct, it must have been in 
1609, when his majesty acknowleilged a work pub- 
lished anonymously three years before, and inscribed 
it to all the crowned heads of Euro]5e. During 
Ayton's residence abroad, as well as at the court of 
England, he lived in intimacy with ati'l secured the 
esteem (jf the most eminent persons of the day. 
"lie was acciuainted," says .Aubrey, "with all tlie 
wits of his time in luigland; he was a great acquaint- 
ance of Mr. Thomas Hobbes of Malmesbury, wlumi 
Air. Ilolihes told me he made use of, together with 
lien Joiison, for an i\ristarchus, wlien he made his 
e]iistle dedicatory for his translation of Thucyiiides,'' 
1 o this information A\e may add, as a proof of this 
respect on the ])art <_)f Ben Jonson, that in his con- 
versations with Drummond of Ilawlhornden, he 
said, "Sir Robert .Ayton loved him (Jonson) dearly." 

Sir Robert -Ayton died at London, in March, 
1637-S, in the sixty-eighth year of his age. He lies 



WILLIAM EDMONDSTOUNE AYTOUX. 



51 



buried in the south aisle of the choir of Westminster 
Abbey, at the corner of King Henry V.'s Chapel, 
under a handsome monument of black marble, erected 
by his nephew, David Ayton of Kinaldie; having his 
bust in brass gilt, which has been preserved, while 
that of Henry, the hero of Agincourt (said to have 
been of a more precious metal), has long since dis- 
appeared. The following is a copy of the inscrip- 
tion: 

M. S. 

Clarissimi omnigenaq. virtute et cniditione, pr^Esertim 
Poesi urnatlssiini equitis, Domini Roberli Aitoni, ex antiqua 
ct illustri gente Aitona, ad Ca.struin Kinnadinum apud Scotos, 
uriundi, qui a Screnissimo R. Jacobo in Cubicula Interiora 
admissus, in Germaniam ad Irap'.Tatorem, Imperiiq. Principes 
cum libello Rogio, Regise authoritatis yindice, Legatus, ac 
primum Annx, demum Marine, serenissimis Britanniarum 
Keginis ab epistolis, consiliis et libcllis supplicibus, nee non 
Xenodochio S" Catherinje prajfectus. Anima Crealoris 
rcddita, hie depositis mortalibus cxuviis secundum Redeinp- 
toris advcntum expectat. 

Carolum linquens, repetit Parentem 
Et valedicens Marise revisit 
Annam et Aulai decus, alto Olympi 
Mutat Honorc. 

Hoc devoti gratiq. animi 
Testimonium optinio Patruo 
Jo. Aitonus M L P. 
Obiit Ccelebs in Regio Albaula 
Non sine maximo Honore omnium 
Luctu et Mftrore, .-Ktat. sua; LXVIII. 

Salut. Humans M.UCXXXVIII. 

AIUSARUM UECUS HIC, PaTRIAEQ. AlLAEQ. DOMIQLE 

Et Fokis exemtlar sed ><on imitauile honesti. 

The poems of Sir Robert Ayton, for the first time 
published together in the Miscellany of the Bannatync 
Club (from which we derive these particulars of the 
poet's life), are few in number, but of great merit. 
He composed no Scottish ])oems, at least none that 
have come down to our times. He wrote in English, 
and was, indeed, one of the first of our countrvmen 
■who composed in that language with any degree of 
elegance or purity. It is unfortunate that the most 
of his poems are complimentary verses to the illus- 
trious individuals with whom he was acquainted, and 
of course characterized only by a strain of conceited 
and extravagant flattery. Those, however, upon 
general topics, are conceived in a refined and tender 
strain of fancy, that reminds us more of the fairy 
strains of Herrick than anything else. John Aulney 
remarks, "that .Sir Robert was one of the best poets 
of his time," and adds the more important testimony 
that "Mr. John Dryden has seen verses of his, some 
of the best of th(2t (i^^e, printed with some other verses." 
According to Dempster, Ayton was also a writer of 
verses in Greek and P'rench, as well as in Englisli 
and Latin. .Several of his Latin poems are preserved 
iti the work called Delitne Poetanim Seotoriim, which 
was [)rinted in his lifetime (1637) at Amsterdam. 

AYTOUN, Wii.i.iAM Edmondstoink. This 
recent poet, essayist, ]iopular lecturer, and ]>rofc>sor, 
who iu each attained to considerable di.-,tinction, was 
born in June, 1813. His father was a writer to the 
signi-t, and wa-^ descended from an old and respect- 
able family in FiR-^hire. The future professor was 
first educateil at the Ivlinhurgh Academy, where he 
was noted among hi> young compeers as an ajU 
scholar; and afterwards at the university of Edin- 
burgli, where he went through the u^ual curriculum. 
In th!< lran>it yming Aytoun became the pupil of 
John'Wilson. jirofo^-'Drnf moral jihilosophv, in whom 
he lo'.ind a kindred spirit, and of whom he sub^e- 
(juently became the son-in-law and literary collahor- 
ateur; and in this clas-^ he distinguished himself at 
the early age of eighteen by his prize ]ioem en- 
titled Judith. After finishing hi'^ course at college. 
.\ytoun completed his studies in Germany, the liter- 



ature of which country h.ad afterwards considerable 
influence on the spirit of his own writings. On hLs 
return to Edinburgh he passed as a writer to the 
signet, but not finding this a congenial occupation, 
he turned to the .Scottish bar, to which he obtained 
admission in 1840. As an advocate, however, he 
had little opportunity of being distinguished as an 
eloquent jdeader, being chietly employed as counsel 
in criminal ca.ses. His fame was chiefly confined to 
the outer or parliament-house, where he was noted as 
one of the wits of the day, and an eminent meml>cr 
of that light-hearted talented jjarty of lawyers who 
were the successors of the "stove school." I'ut such 
talents as his could not be confined to imprfimjitu 
sayings, and satisfied with the applause they created; 
and he produced for Uie principal magazines con- 
tributions, both in prose and verse, which indi- 
cated a writer of no mean powers. While a contri- 
butor to 7'aifs Magazine, he also, in conjunction 
with his friend Theodore Martin, commenced the 
Bon Gitaltier Ballads, the best collection of that 
kind of poetry extant. 

The literary talents of Aytoun, which were now 
generally recognized, obtained him, in 1S39, a wel- 
come admission amongthecontributorsto Blackwood's 
Magazine; and in this distinguished periodical he 
soon found rivals to quicken his powers, as well as 
a sphere for their best exertions. It was there also 
that from time to time he published those stirring 
national odes which he afterwards gave to the \\ orld 
in a collective form, under the title of Lays of the 
Scottish Cavaliers. Like most young men of ardent 
feelings and literary acquirements, he at the com- 
mencement of life had entertained liberal sentiments 
in politics, which he afterwards saw fit to change; 
and this change, as is usually the case, was into a 
farther extreme on the opposite side than if he had 
been born and bred a Tor}-. The effects of this con- 
version are apparent in his Lays, where cavalier- 
devotedness in loyalty is as absolute as it is enthusi- 
astic, and the conclusive unanswerable arginnent of 
which is, "Thus saith the king." Such Jacobiti;m, 
however, in the nineteenth century is so rare, and 
withal so harmless, that its extravagance maybe jwr- 
doned onaccount of itssingularityand itsdisinterested- 
ness. Rut still more anient than his Jacobitism was 
his. enthusiastic Caledonian patriotism, that delighted 
to dwell upon the ancient remembrances of his coun- 
try, and which made him conspicuous as the champion 
of a party that lived for a brief period, and whose 
great demand was the redress of Scottish grievances. 
But the poetic element of his Lays of the Scottish 
Caz-alicrs is animated and inspired by either feeling, 
so that while I'he Heart cf Bruce, and L'.diiU urgii 
after Floddeu, are lyrics ennobled by the purest 
national devotcdness, his Buruil March cf Dundee, 
and Charles Edward at rtV.r(//7/<j-, are all th.e more 
poetical from the fervour of the Jacobite si>ir.t by 
which they are characterized. Lut it was not m-jrely 
by his poetr}- that Aytoun Ijccame one of ilic mo-; 
dir-iinguished ^\■riters in B.'cJc/.'eccd. His t-ssays, 
dissertations, and talcs in that magazine were c':i;.illy 
jiojiular; and few of its mirth-ins]iiring stunts cm 
compete v.ith h.is (ilc;.'Mutch/:in /\\::.':eir.: iV yA:r I 
became a ]'ecma;i. How .assiduously aivi e\cli>iVLly 
his literary exertions were devoted to th.is oi^e ] eri- 
odical mav be nu'lerstood from the fact thr.t, bc^v.etii 
the year 1S30. when he f,r< a] I'cared in i-.s j .-.^e-. 
until 1S65. the year of liis deatli. he ci r.triii'.iiel n.' le 
tinn 120 articles up'. II a great i::\ers:;y i 1 M.i'.ee;-. 
but all of t!;em disiinguislied ly m ;;ie ; .•:i:Lu!;;r 
excellence. 

While Ay!(.r- w-sthusestab:i-hirg ah--' V'- r-ry 
rejHilation thii ug!i a n:e'.;;uin g' r.e:.-. y •... - ■.'^..t so 



"WILLIAM EDMOXDSTOUXE AYTOUX 



WILLIAM BALFOUR BAIKIE. 



precarious and evanescent as that of magazine writing, 
the chair of rhetoric and bdlcs-lettrcs in the university 
of Edinburgh became vacant, and to this professor- 
ship he was appointed in 1845. I' ^^'^^ ^ great 
change in the hterary Hfe of one who had hitherto 
frolicked over the whole field of intellect, and regu- 
lated his choice of subjects by the mood of the pass- 
ing hour. A systematic course of lectures was to be 
delivered; but this was not all — he must train young 
tyros to accurate thought and correct graceful com- 
position, and bear with those blunders that set the 
teeth of a refined critic on edge. He must subject 
his pupils to daily oral examination, and revise their 
themes and essays pen in hand and with a patience 
all-enduring. But on the other hand, every depart- 
ment of his course was already familiar to his mind; 
in training the youthful intellect he could remember 
how his own had been matured; and while leading 
them by the same way, he couKl enjoy the luxury of 
living over again, and seeing himself reproduced 
anew in the pupils who walked in his steps. His 
assiduity, hisjiatience, and his sympathy as a teacher, 
and the popularity and success with whicli they were 
crowned, very soon appeared. A chair which had 
hitherto been little regarded, became one of tiie most 
popular in the university; and his class-room, which 
at first comprised about thirty students, was at the 
close of his life attended by a hundred and fifty. 

The other particulars of Aytoun's life may be 
briefly enumerated. In 1849 he married Jane, the 
youngest daughter of Professor Wilson, wlio died 
ten years after. In 1S52, on account of the services 
he had rendered as a writer to their party. Lord 
Derby and his friends acknowledged their oljligation 
by apjiointing him sheriff and vice-admiral of Orkney 
ar.d .Shetland; and the duties of these offices he 
carefully fulfilled, spending for the purpose a con- 
sideral)le portion of each summer in these islands. 
After four vcars of widowhoo 1, he, in Decemljer, 



1 863, married Miss Kinnear, a near relative of his 
friends, the Balfours of Trennabie, in Orkney. As 
yet in the prime of life, a large amount of happiness 
was thought to be still in store for him: but in the 
winter of 1864 he sickened, his constitution was 
gradually undermined, and he died on the 4th of 
August, 1S65. 

During such varied activity of a literary life, and 
so prolific in its various productions, much that Mr. 
Aytoun wrote was upon subjects of political interest 
for the day, and therefore they have quietly dropped, 
or are dropping, out of notice. His tales, however, 
will always be appreciated as veritable pictures of 
human nature, and will show how high a place he 
would have occupied if he had devoted himself to this 
kind of literature. But it is as a poet that he will 
be best rememl;ered, and his Lays and touching 
songs will be quoted when his political dissertations 
are forgot. While he lived, not the least of his 
literary distinctions arose from being supposed the 
editor of Blackii'ood''s Magazine, and that in this 
ofhce he succeeded his father-in-law. Professor John 
Wilson. But that both suppositions were entirely 
unfounded has been declared by official authority in 
the following intimation: — " It was erroneously sup- 
posed in some quarters that Mr. Aytoun occupied 
the position of editor of this magazine. Indeed, it 
seems difficult to persuade our friends at a distance 
of what is well known to those nearer at hand, that 
the proprietors of this magazine have never, since 
its commencement, now nearly half a century ago, 
devolved upon others the powers or responsibilities 
of an editor. To this system, perhaps, they owe it 
that the magazine has preserved a uniform consis- 
tency of aim and purpose; and that, while warm in 
its advocacy of great views and principles, it has 
avoided those petty partizanships and predilections 
from which it is so difficult for an ordinary editor to 
keep free.''' 



B- 



BAIKIE, Wii.i.iAM BAi.roiR, M. D., R.X. The 
fiel'l of .\frican ex])luration, althougli tlie most 
difficult and deadly, has always l)een the favourite 
choice of Scottish traveller^. .And wlience this 
])eculiarity? It perhaps arises from the national 
cliaracter, wliich only becomes more resolute from 
ojiposition, and which scorns to suecuml) as long as 
there are dangers to surmount or difficulties to be 
overcome. Although alnvi^t everv new j^atli of 
African discovery contains the grave of sonic un- 
firtunate Scottish ex]ilorer who died mi(l-\\a\-, tlie 
lonely hilloek only animates some successor to ac- 
com]>li-.h what the other has left tiiidonc, instead of 
compelling him to pau^e and turn liaek. .Amon:,; 
these martyrs of .Afriean discovery, the li-t f u' tlie 
present terminates with tlie name of Dr. William 
Balfour P.aikie. 

This lamented travellrr was the son of Captain 
John ]5aikie, R.X*., and was b')rn at Kirkwall, 
Orkney, 1S20. yVfter an education at the grannnar- 
school of his native town, he went to Edinbui;di, 
studied medicine, and highly distinginshed himself 
in the medical classes of the iniiverNitv. Having 
obtained the degree of M.D. he entered the ro\.;l 
navy as assistant-surgeon in .\Iareh 15, 1S4S, and in 
this cajiacity served fir sonic time in tlie I'l'/t/gr. 
a survevinc: vessel in the Mediterranean. But it w.i- 



in lSs5 tliat he was introduced to his proper voca- 
tion, bv being sent f)Ut on board the /'Awi/ steamer 
as an accredited envoy of the British government, 
for the jnirpose of opening up the trade of the 
Xiger, forming a trading settlement in the interior of 
Africa, and thus bringing the various Xiger expedi- 
tions to a ]iractical conclusion. It was while thus 
employed that the iron steamer /Jay Spring was 
lost in going through some of the rajudsof the river; 
l)ut this disaster, instead of discouraging Dr. Baikie, 
only made him nuire active and self-reliant. Having 
saved all he could from the wreck, he took up his 
abode with the wild African tribes, and followed 
out his duties as a govermnent commissioner by ex- 
]iloring the country in every direction, and entering 
into binding engagements with the African ehie-fs 
and their people in relation to their traffic with the 
British. But while thus em])loyed as a ])ioneer of 
eonnnerce and civilization, and collecting vocabu- 
laries of the n.ative languages for the pur]iose of 
facilitating the intercourse of Europeans with the 
natives, his su])plies from home were exhausted, his 
horses (iied, aiifl he soon found himself as bare and 
helple--^ as the most imjioverished of our y\friean 
tiavL-llers. \'ct still zealous to prosecute his \\-ork, 



' r.'a.KicooJs Mai;azi):c for ScptijiuLcr, iC', 



WILLIAM BALFOUR BAIKIE JOANNA BAILLIE. 



53 



and another vessel, tlie Sunbeam, being sent to his 
relief, he settled at Lukoja, near the junction of the 
Chadda with the Niger. The account of it, given by 
Dr. Baikie in .September, l86l, invests it with con- 
siderable mercantile importance. "The King of 
Niipe, tlie most powerful next to the Sultan of 
Sokoto, being desirous of seeing a market for Euro- 
pean produce here, entered into relations with us, 
and undertook to open various roads for the passage 
of caravans, traders, and canoes to this place, which 
promise has been faithfully performed; I, on my part, 
giving him to understand that it was the desire of her 
majesty's government to have a trading station here. 
... I have started a regular market here, and have 
established the recognition of Sunday as a non-trad- 
ing day, and the exclusion of slaves from our market. 
Alreacly traders come to us from Kabbi, Kano, and 
other parts of Hausa; and we hope, ere long, to see 
regular caravans with ivory and other produce. The 
step I am taking is not lightly adopted. After a 
prolonged absence from England, to stay another 
season here without any Europeans, with only a 
faint prospect of speedy communication, and after 
all my experience of hunger and difficulty last year, 
is by no means an inviting prospect. But what 
I look to are the securing for England a command- 
ing position in Central Africa, and the necessity of 
making a commencement." 

The most serious difficulty which Dr. Baikie had 
encountered arose from the precarious character of 
his official position. In consequence of the loss of 
tlie PUiaJ and other disasters, the foreign office in 
i860 recalled the expedition to the Niger; but his 
unaided attempts had been so successful, and he had 
brought over so many African chiefs to his views by 
l)romises of British co-operation, that our govern- 
ment cancelled the recal, and ordered the expedition 
to be continued. Baikie was therefore enabled to 
continue the good work which he had commenced 
at his settlement of Lukoja; and after having seen it 
securely established, he craved leave of absence in 
October, 1S63. The wish he expressed was to see 
his aged father, from whom he had been absent seven 
years. In June, 1864, the foreign office assented, 
in the hope that in the following year he would 
return to his African settlement; and Dr. Baikie, 
eager to revisit his native home, arrived at Lagos 
in October. Had he immediately embarked for 
England as he had at first intended, and as he 
announced to hi3 expecting friends at home, his 
safety might have been insured. But the labour of 
arranging his African preparations occupied so much 
time, that the favourable opportunity was lost. 
Arriving at Sierra Leone, that place so fatal to 
European constitutions, he was attacked with illness 
which in two short days ended his adventurous 
career. 

Such is the brief narrative of one wliose travels 
and exertions in .-Vfrica would of themselves suftke 
to fill a whole volume of interesting biography. 
But it was not in action alone that his energies were 
expended. His earnest studies in a climate so 
enervating and exhausting, his extensive geographical 
and physiological observations, his contributi<jns to 
scientific societies, and his copious correspondence, 
would of themselves furnish an amount of knowledge 
about the ]K-ople, climate, and productions of the 
interior of Africa as would vastly enrich the store- 
house of our African research. Nor were his labours 
less abundant in the African languages, so that his 
vocabularies of the Ilausa, Fulo. and l-'ulfulde tongues 
comprise each of them between three an<l four thousand 
words. Out of so large a collection of manuscripts, 
and where tliere is so much excellence from which 



to choose, we hope that a publication will lie given 
as an enduring monument of the sterling worth of 
Dr. Baikie. This good work indeed is already in 
progress, his numerous journals descriptive of his 
travels and researches, now in the foreign office, 
having been placed in the hands of Dr. Kirk, the 
accomplished African traveller, for revision and 
arrangement. The printed communications of Dr. 
Baikie are comprised in the following short list : — 
Despatches frotu 0/ the A'lger Kxpedition rela- 
tive to the Trade of that River, and to the liligihilil-, 
of Central Africa as a future Cotton-field. Map. 
Folio, 1862. (Blue Book.) — Report on the Geoi^ru- 
phical Position of the Countries in the neighbourhood of 
the Niger, &c. Map. Folio, 1862. — Obsenations 
on the Hausa and Fulfulde Languages. Privately 
printed, 8vo, 1862. — iVarrative of an Exploring 
P'oyage up the Rivers A'u'dra and Binue (commonly 
known as the Niger and Tsada), in 1854: 8vo, 1856. 

BAILLIE, Joanna, authoress of Plays on the 
Passions, and various other dramatic works and . 
poems, was bom on September li, 1762, in the 
manse of Bothwell in Lanarkshire. Her father, Dr. 
James Baillie, the minister of that parish, and sub- 
sequently professor of divinity in the university of 
Glasgow, sprang from a family allied to that of the 
celebrated Principal Robert Baillie, and likewise to 
that of the Baillies of Jerviswood, memorable in the 
history of Scotland. All these lines were derived 
from the ancient stem of the Baillies of Lamington. 
Her mother, also, was one of a race well known in 
.Scottish heraldry, for she was descended from the 
Hunters of Hunterston, and was the sister of William 
and John Hunter, both renowned in the annals of 
science. The children, by the marriage of Dr. 
James Baillie with Miss Hunter, were Agnes; 
Matthew, afterwards the eminent physician; and 
Joanna, a twin- — the other child being still-born. 

The early youth of Joanna Baillie was passed 
among the romantic scenes of Bothwell, where eveiy 
element existed to awaken the fancy of the poet; 
but when she had attained her sixth year the family 
removed to Hamilton, to the collegiate church of 
which place her father had been appointed minister. 
During her childhood Joanna Baillie was not re- 
markable for acquirement, yet, nevertheless, showed 
much originality and quickness of intellect. She 
made verses before she could read, and soon mani- 
fested dramatic talent. She took ever)- opportunity 
of arranging among her young companions theatrical 
performances, in which her power of sustaining 
characters was remarkable, and she frequently wrote 
the dialogue herself She was also cons])icuous fur 
fearlessness of disjaosition, which in after-years dis- 
played itself in moral courage — a virtue often ]iro- 
minent in her conduct. Notwithstanding the de- 
cided tendency of her mind, she did not become an 
author till at a later ])eriod than is usual with th(i>e 
who are subject to the strong imjndses of genius. 
In 1778 her father died; and in 17S4, hi? wid^w, 
with her daughters, having lived for some year.- r.t 
Long Calderwood, near Hamilton, procecile 1 t^ 
London to reside with her son, vho had tliere 
entered on his medical career, and who, i:;i.in the 
death of his uncle, Dr. William Ilur.tcr. lir.d bcc-!;io 
possessed of the house in Great Wimhn;!! Siixl: 
which the latter had built and inli.ibitod. 

It was in this al)ode that Joanna Baiilio. in 17^,0. 
first re>olved upon iiubli.-hing. and tlie n.-uit \\.';-a 
small volume of miscellaneous juxMn-, to wIkJi ~!ie 
did not affix her name. The.-e (.•v-.ncoil ci'T>; ^-r.i: -.e 
talent, hut not the j^owor she at'terw ar!- m.-niv-icii. 
In 17'jS >he gavj to tlie wurld, r.L-j an-'iiyr.-. ju.-fy, 



54 



JOANNA EAILLIE MATTHEW BAILLIE. 



her first volume of dramas, in which the true bent of 
her genius was fully seen. This was entitled A 
Serit-s of Plays, in which it is atUmptcd to Delineate 
the Stronger Passions of the Mind, each Passion being 
the subject of a Tragedy and a Comedy, and these were 
accompanied by an introductory discourse of some 
length, in which dramatic composition was discussed, 
in which, also, many original views were announced, 
together witli the peculiar system she proposed to 
adopt. Rich though the period was in poetry, this 
work made a great impression, and a new edition of 
it was soon required. The writer was sought for 
among the most gifted personages of the day, and 
the illustrious Scott, with others then equally appre- 
ciated, was suspected as the author. The jiraise 
bestowed upon Pasil and De Montfori encouraged 
the autlioress, and in lSo2, she pul>iished another 
volume of plays on the Passions. Although much 
o'.)jection w.is made to theopinions she hail enunciated 
in the preface to her first dramas, and though the 
criticism from an influential (juarter was severe, she 
atlhered to her jiurpose, and continued to write on 
the same plan which she had at first evolved; for, 
in 1S12, she sent forth another volume of plays on 
the Passions, and in 1836. three more volumes of 
plays, containing some in prosecution of her primary 
design, which she thus completed, and some on 
miscellaneous subjects. Besides those above-men- 
tioned, during the long j^eriod of her career she 
j)ubli>hed various other dramas, and all her writings 
in this form exhibit great originality, power, and 
knowledge of human nature. Her works also are 
rich in imagery, and a pure and energetic strain of 
poetry pervades them. For the great effects she 
produced she was little indebted to study, of which 
her pages bear few indications. The characters she 
portrayed, the stories on which her plays were 
founded, and the management of them, proceeded 
almost entirely fr(jm her own invention. She was 
the authoress, also, of some poems, as well as songs, 
of high merit, among which may be especially men- 
tionetl those well-known favourite .Scottish ones 
entitled "The bride, she is winsome and bonnie," 
and " It fell on a morning when we were thrang;" 
and the lyrical c<>mpo>iti()iis scattered through her 
dramas are distinguished i)y their freshness and 
beauty. Some of her ))lays were represented on the 
stage, but without much success. Passion in them 
is forcibly and faithfully delineated, but without 
those startling and effective situations calculated to 
obtain tlu.-atrical triumph. Unmarried, and dwelling 
out of London, she had not those op])ortunities of 
frequenting the theatre which are necessary for the 
pnxluction of coInpo^itions jiopular in rejiresenfation. 
It must l)e remembered, also, that female delicacy 

{)laces a limit not only to the exuberance of jiassion, 
>ut also to the choice of subjects, which interfered 
both with the f)rce and variety of her ])lays. 

.After Joanna I5aillie had left Scotland, in 17S4, 
she di'l ni)t return to her native land excejit for 
occasional visits. Upon the marriage of her brother, 
in 1791, with Miss l)enman, tiie sister of flu- Lord 
Chief-justice Denman, Joanna P.aillie, with lu-r 
mother and si>ter, passed some years at (Ji)lelK>ter, 
but subsequently settled at Ilampstead. near I-omion, 
where she resi<lcd for more than half a centurv. 
Her mother died in 1806, and her sole companion 
during the remainder of her life was her sister, 
whose character, virtues, and claims upon the 
affections rif the ]ioetess arc beniUifully connneni- 
orated by her in an address to .Miss .\gnes I'aillie 
on her birth-day. The means of Joanna I'aillie 
were sufficient ff>r every comfort, and enabled her 
to see many of the most distinguished individuals 



the great metropolis contained, who, attracted 
by her high reputation, her perfect simplicity 
of manners, and the talent and shrewdness of her 
conversation, resorted freely to her home. Sir 
Walter Scott was one of her warmest friends and 
most ardent admirers, as many passages in his 
writings declare. Joanna Baillie was under the 
middle size, but not diminutive, and her form was 
slender. Her countenance indicated high talent, 
worth, and decision. Her life was characterized by 
the purest morality. Her principles were sustained 
by a strong and abiding sense of religion, while her 
great genius, and the engrossing pursuits of composi- 
tion, never interfered with her active benevolence 
or the daily duties of life. She died in her house, in 
Hampstead, on the 23d day of February, 185 1. 

BAILLIE, Matthew, M.D., a distinguished 
modern physican and anatomist, was the son of the 
Rev. James Baillie, D.D., professor of divinity in 
the university of Glasgow. He was born October 
27, 1761, in the manse of Shotts, of which parish his 
father was then minister. The father of Dr. Matthew 
Baillie was supposed to be descended from the family 
of Baillie of Jerviswood, so noted in the history of 
Scottish freedom; his mother was a sister of the two 
celebrated anatomists. Dr. William and Mr. John 
Hunter; and one of his two sisters was Miss Joanna 
Baillie, the well-known and amiable authoress of 
Plays on (he Passions. After receiving the rudiments 
of his education under his father's immediate super- 
intendence, he began his academical course in 1773, 
in the university of Glasgow, where he distinguished 
himself so highly as to be transferred, in 1778, upon 
.Snell's foundation, to Baliol College, Oxford. Here, 
when he had attained the proper standing, he took 
his degrees in arts and physic. In 1780, while still 
keeping his terms at O.v:ford, he commenced his 
anatomical studies at London, under the care of his 
uncles. He had the great advantage of residing with 
Dr. William Hunter, and, when he became suffi- 
ciently advanced in his studies, of being employed to 
make the necessary preparations for the lectures, to 
conduct the demonstrations, and to superintend the 
operations of the students. On the death of Dr. 
Hunter, March, 1783, he was found qualified to be- 
come the successor of that great man, in conjunction 
with Mr. Cruickshank, who had j^reviously been 
employed as Dr. Hunter's assistant. His uncle 
a])])ointed him by will to have the use of liis splendid 
collection of anatomical preparations, so long as he 
should continue an anatomical lecturer, after which 
it was to be transferred to Cilasgow College. Dr. 
Baillie began to lecture in 1784, anil soon acquired 
the highest reputation as an anatomical teacher. 
He was himself indefatigable in the business of fomi- 
ing jireparations, adding, it is said, no fewer than 
eleven hundred articles to his uncle's museum. He 
])i)ssessed the valuable talent of making an abstruse 
and dift'icult subject ]ilain; his prelections were re- 
markalile for that lucid order and clearness of ex- 
]iressioii which proceed from a perfect conception of 
the subject; anil he never permitted any vanity of 
display to turn him from his great object of convey- 
ing inlormation in the simplest and most intelligible 
\\ay, and so as to become useful to his pupils. The 
distinctness of his elocution was also much admired, 
notwithstanding that he never could altogether shake 
ofl the accent of liis native country. In 1795 Dr. 
baillie embodied the knowledge he ]:)ossessed through 
his own observations and those of liis uncle in a 
small but most valuable work, entitled The Morbid 
Aihilomy of some of the most important Parts of the 
Ilnntau r,ody, wliicli \\as immediately translated 



MATTHEW BAILLIE. 



into French and German, and extended his name to 
every land where medical science was cultivated. 
The publication of this little treatise was, indeed, an 
era in the history of medical knowledge in this 
country. It combined all the information formerly 
scattered throu;^h the writings of Bonetus, Lieutaud, 
and Montagcii, besides the immense store of observa- 
tions made by the ingenious author. The know- 
ledge of the changes produced on the human frame 
by disease had previously been very imperfect; but 
it was now so com|)letely elucidated that, with the 
assistance of this little volume, any j)erson previously 
acijuainted with morbid symptoms, but unacquainted 
with the disease, could, upon an examination after 
death, understand the whole malady. Perhaps no 
production of the period ever liad so much influence 
on the study of medicine, or contributed so much to 
correct unfounded speculations upon the nature of 
disease, to excite a spirit of observation, and to lead 
the attention of the student to fact and experience. 
Along with all its excellencies, it was delightful to 
observe the extreme modesty and total absence of 
pretension with which the author, in the fulness of 
liis immense knowledge, ushered it into the world. 

In 1787 Dr. Baillie had been elected physician 
to St. George's Hospital, a situation which afforded 
him many of those opj^ortunities of observation 
upon which the success of his work on Morbid Ana- 
tomy was founded. In 1789, having taken his 
degree of M.D. at Oxford, he was admitted a can- 
didate at the College of Physicians, and in the fol- 
lowing year had the full privileges of fellowship 
conferretl upon him. About the same time he was 
elected a fellow of the Royal Society, to which he 
had contributed two essays. He served the office 
of censor in the Royal College of Physicians, in 
1792 and 1797, and that of commissioner under the 
act of parliament for the inspection and licensing of 
mad-houses in 1794 and 1795. 

In 1799 Dr. Paillie relinquished the business of 
an anatomical lecturer, and in 1800 resigned his 
duties as physician to .St. George's Hospital. Partly 
by the inlluence of his fame as an anatomist, and 
partly through the disinterested recommendations of 
several members of his own profession, he found 
himself gradually tempted into the less agreeable 
business of a general physician. He was always 
resorted to when more than ordinary scientific pre- 
cision was rec|uired. About the year iSoi, when 
he had attained the mature age of forty, he had be- 
come completely absorlied in practice. As a physi- 
cian, he possessed, in an eminent degree, a facility 
in distinguishing diseases — one of the most impor- 
tant qualifications in the practice of medicine, as a 
want of accuracy in discriminating symptomatic 
from primary affections leads to the most serious 
errors; wiiiUt it may be said that, when a disease is 
once distinctly characterized, and the peculiarities of 
the case defined, the cure is half performed. I labits 
-if attentive observation had enabled Dr. Baillie to 
know, with great accuracy, the precise extent of the 
powers of medicine; indeed, there was no class of 
cases more likely to f;\Il under his observation than 
those in which they had been abused, younger prac- 
titioners being apt to carry a particular system of 
treatment beyond its proper limits; Dr.Baillie's 
readiness, therefore, in seeing this abuse, rendered 
his opinions, in many ca>es, of great value. Yet he 
was always scrupulously anxious, through the natural 
benignity of his (li>])osition. to use his knowledge 
with a delicate regard to the interests of those juniors 
whose proce<lure lie was called upon to amend. He 
managed, indeed, this ]\-irt of liis practice with so 
much delicacv that lie wa^ held in the utmost atTec- 



tion and esteem by the younger branciies of the pro- 
fession. 

Dr. Baillie was remarkable for forming his judg- 
ment of any case before him from his own observa- 
tions exclusively; carefully guarding himself against 
any prepossessions from the opinions suggested bv 
others. When he visited a patient, he obser^•ed him 
accurately, he listened to him attentively, he put a 
few pointed c[uestions — and his opinion was f(jrmed. 
Beneath a most natural and unassuming manner, 
which was the same on all occasions, was c<mcealed 
an almost intuitive power of perceiving the state 
of his patient. His mind was always quietly, but 
eagerly, directed to an investigation of the symptoms; 
and he had so distinct and systematic a mode of 
putting questions, that the answers of his patients 
often presented a connected view of the whole case. 
On such occasions, he avoided technical and learned 
phrases; he affected none of that sentimental tender- 
ness which is sometimes assumed by a j)hysician 
with a view to recommend himself to his patient; but 
he expressed what he had to say in the simplest and 
plainest terms; with some pleasantrv' if the occasion 
admitted of it, and with gravity and gentleness if 
they were required; and he left his patient either 
encouraged or tranquillized, persuafled that the 
opinion he had received was sound and honest, whether 
it was unfavourable or not, and that his physician 
merited his confidence. In delivering or writing his 
opinions he was equally remarkable for unaffected 
simplicity. His language was sometimes so plain, 
that his patients have been able to repeat to their 
other medical attendants every word w hich he had 
uttered. In consultation he gave his opinion con- 
cisely, and with a few grounds; those grounds being 
chiefly facts, rather than arguments, so that little 
room was left for disjnite. If any difference or diffi- 
culty arose, his example pointed out the way of re- 
moving it, by an appeal to other facts, and by a 
neglect of speculative reasoning. 

In ever}' relation and situation of private life Dr. 
Baillie was equally to be admired; and it must be 
added, that the same liberal and just ideas which, on 
all occasions, guided his conduct as an individual, 
ruled him in his many public duties: he never coun- 
tenanced any measures which had the appearance of 
oppression or hostility towards the mendjers of his 
profession. Men seldom act, collectively, with the 
same honour and integrity as they would do individ- 
ually; and a member of a ]Uiblic body requires an 
unu.-.ual share of moral courage, who oppo.-es those 
measures cf his associates which he may not him- 
self approve of; but if there was one (jualification 
more than another which gave Dr. Baillie the 
public confidence he enjoyed, and raised him to the 
zenith of professional distinction, it was \\\> inllexibic 
integrity. 

In 1799 Dr. Baillie commenced the pulilication 
of A Scries cf Eiii^rarnr^s to illustrate soiiw I'arts oj 
Morbid Aim'tpviy, in successive yi?.u7<7///. \\hich were 
completed in 1S02. The drawings fnr thi> -jilerjiid 
work were done by Mr. Clift. the con-ervnt'.r of tlic 
Hunterian Museum in Lincoln's Inn l-ieh'.s; .y>i 
they were creditable at once to the taste and lilier.i'.ity 
of Dr. Baillie, and to the state o\ art in tl;at <:ay. 
Dr. Baillie afterwards published .1 >; .! >::itr::.\:i / 'r- 
soription of tlu- Grand i'torus: and thn i:-!:' i;: :h.e 
whole course of hi> iirofe-sional life, he c^ •r.-,iil u'.ed 
largely to the transactions and nu- ileal oLeL::-!- 
of the time. ^Vhen he wa- at th.e liei-h; "1 1::- 
popularitv. he enioyeti a hii^her iix' iv.c tijan ar.y 
lireceding jilivsician, and whi^b. wa- ■ r.iy ;:-:i-:i" r ;■> 
the sum receive<! by one ]iar;icv,;ar c r.'u;;; ■ aarv. 
In one of his busiest vears, \\hen he hai scarcely 



56 



MATTHEW BAILLIE 



ROBERT BAILLIE. 



time to take a single meal, it is said lo have reached 
_;,^io,ooo. He was admitted to have the greatest 
consultation business of his time; and it was known 
that he was applied to for medical advice from many 
distant quarters of the world. From his arduous, 
and to his mind often irksome, duties, he enjoyed no 
rela.xation for many years, till at length he began to 
indulge in an annual retirement of a few months to 
the country. On one of the first of these occasions 
he paid a visit to the land of his birth, which, during 
an absence of thirty years, spent in busy and distract- 
ing pursuits, he had never ceased to regard with the 
most tender feelings. The love of country was, in- 
deed, a prominent feature in his character; and he 
was prepared on this occasion to realize many enjoy- 
ments which he had previously contemplated with 
enthusiasm, in the prospect of once more beholding 
the land and friends of his youth. The result was 
far different from his expectations. lie found most 
of his early companions cither scattered over the 
world, in search, as he himself had been, of fortune, 
or else forgotten in untimely graves; of those who 
survived, many were removed beyond his sym- 
pathies by that total alteration of feeling which a 
difference of worldly circumstances so invariably 
effects in the hearts of early friends, on the side of 
the depressed party as well as the elevated. 

Dr. Baillie was introduced to the favourable 
notice of the royal family, in consequence of his 
treatment of the Duke of Gloucester. Being subse- 
quently joined in consultation with the king's phy- 
sicians upon his majesty's own unhappy case, he 
came more prominently than ever into public view, 
as in some measure the j)rincipal director of the 
royal treatment. The political responsit^ility of this 
situation was so very weighty, that, if Dr. Baillie 
had been a man of less firmness of nerve, he could 
scarcely have maintained himself under it. vSuch, 
however, was the public confidence in his inflexible 
integrity, that, amidst the hopes and fears which for 
a long time agitated the nation on the subject of 
the king's health, the opinion of Dr. Baillie ever 
regulatetl that of the public. On the first vacancy, 
which occurred in l8io, he was appointed one of 
the physicians to the king, with the offer of a baron- 
etcy, which, however, his good sense and unassum- 
ing disposition induced him to decline. 

Dr. Baillie at length sunk under tlie weight of 
his practice, notwithstanding that for several years 
he h.id taken ever>' possible expedient to shift off his 
duties to tiie care of younger aspirants. At the last 
fjuarterly meeting of the College of Physicians before 
his death, when there was a full assemblage of 
members, in the midst of the affairs for the considera- 
tion of which they were called together. Dr. Baillie 
entered the room, emaciated, hectic, and with all 
the symptoms of appro.aching dissolution. .Such 
was the effect of his sudden and unexpected ajjjiear- 
ance, that the ])ublic business was suspended, and 
every one present instantly and sjiontaneously rose, 
and remained standing until Dr. Baillie had taken 
his seat; the incident, though trivial, evinces the affec- 
tionate reverence with which he was regarded. Be- 
sides the natural claim he had u])on this body, from 
his unapproaclied anatomical and medical skill, and 
the extraordinary benignity and worth of his char- 
acter, he had entitled himself to its ])ecu!iar grati- 
tude by leaving to it the whole of his valuable collec- 
tion of preparatif)ns, together with the sum of /^6oo 
to keep it in order. Dr. Baillie died on tiie 23d 
of September, 1823. 

Dr. Baillie had married, 5th May, 1791, Miss 
Snphia Denman, second daughter of Dr. Deiiman 
of London, a distinguished physician, and sister of 



Mr., subsequently Lord Denman and Lord High- 
chancellor of England. By her he left one son, to 
whom he bequeathed his estate of Dantisbourne, in 
Oloucestershire; and one daughter. The sums and 
effects destined by his will, many of which were 
given to medical institutions and public charities, 
were sworn in the prerogative court at less than 
,,{^80,000. 

Dr. Baillie is thus characterized in the Annual 
Obituary for 1824: — "He seemed to have an innate 
goodness of heart, a secret sympathy with the virtuous, 
and to rejoice in their honourable and dignified con- 
duct, as in a thing in which he had a personal in- 
terest, and as if he felt that his own character was 
raised by it as well as human nature ennobled. He 
censured warmly what he disapproved, from a strong 
attachment to what is right, not to display his super- 
iority to others, or to give vent to any asperity of 
temper; at the same time he was indulgent to fail- 
ings, his kindness to others leading him on many 
occasions to overlook what was due to himself; and 
even in his last illness he paid gratuitous jjrofessional 
visits which were above his strength, and was in 
danger of suddenly exhausting himself by exertions 
for others. His liberal disposition was well known 
to all acquainted with public subscriptions; the 
great extent to which it showed itself in private bene- 
factions is known only to those who were nearly 
connected with him, and perhaps was fully known 
only to himself." 

BAlXiLIE, Robert, one of the most eminent, 
and perhaps the most moderate, of all the Scottish 
Presbyterian clergy during the time of the civil war, 
was born at Glasgow in 1599. His father, Thomas 
Baillie, citizen, was descended from the Baillies of 
Lamington; his mother, Helen Gibson, was of the 
family of Gibson of Durie, both of which stocks 
are distinguished in Presbyterian history. Having 
studied divinity in his native university, Mr. Baillie 
in 1622 received episcopal orders from Archbishop 
Law of Glasgow, and became tutor to the son of the 
I'larl of ICglintoune, by whom he was ])resentcd to 
the parish church of Kilwinning. In 1626 he was ad- 
mitted a regent at the college of Glasgow, and, on 
taking his chair, delivered an inaugural oration Dc 
Alenfe Agcnte. About this period he appears to ha\e 
prosecuted the study of the oriental languages, in 
which he is allowed to have attained no mean pro- 
ficiency. For some years he lived in terms of the 
strictest intimacy with the noble and pious family of 
l'"gIintoune, as also with his ordinary, Archbishop 
Law, with whom he kept up an epistolary corrcs- 
liondence. Baillie was not only educated and or- 
dained as an Episcopalian; but he had imbibed from 
Principal Cameron of Glasgow the doctrine of passive 
resistance. He apj^ears, however, to have been 
l)rought over to opposite views during the interval 
between 1630 and 1636, which he employed in dis- 
cussing with his felh.iw -clergymen the doctrines of 
Arminianism, and the new ecclesiastical regulations 
introduced into the Scottish church by Archbisho]) 
Laud. Hence, in the year 1636, being desired by 
Archbisho]) Law to preach at I'xlinburgh in favour 
of the canon and service-books, he positively refused, 
writing, however, ares])ectful ajiology to his lordshi]!. 
Lndeared to the resisting party by this coiuhict, he 
was chosen to represent the jiresbytery of Irvine in 
the General Assembly of 1638, by which the royal 
])Ower was braved in the name of the whole nation, 
and Iqiiscopacy formally dissolved. In this meeting 
Baillie is said to have behaved with great modera- 
tion; a term, however, which must be understood ns 
only comi)arative, for the expressions used in his 



ROBERT BAILLIE. 



57 



letter regarding the matters condemned are not 
wliat would now be considered moderate. 

In tile ensuing year, when it was found necessary 
to vindicate the proceedings of the Glasgow Assem- 
hly with the sword, Haillie entered heartily into the 
views of his countrymen. I le accompanied the army 
to Dunse Law, in the capacity of ])reacher to the 
Earl of Eglintoune's regiment; and he it was who has 
handed down the well-known description of that ex- 
traordinary camp. "It would have done you good," 
lie remarks in one of his letters, "to have cast your 
eyes athort our brave and rich hills, as oft as I did 
with great contentment and joy; for I was there 
among the rest, being chosen preacher by the gentle- 
men of our shire, who came late with Lord Eglin- 
toune. I furnished to half a dozen of good fellows 
muskets and pikes, and to my boy a broadsword. 
I carried myself, as the fashion was, a sword, and 
a couple of Dutch pistols at my saddle; but I pro- 
mise, for the ofTence of no man, except a robber in 
the way; for it was our part alone to pray and 
preach for the encouragement of our countrymen, 
which I did to my power most cheerfully" {Letters, 
vol. i. p. 174). He afterwards states, "Our soldiers 
grew in experience of arms, in courage, and favour 
daily. Every one encouraged another. The sight 
of their no'^les and their beloved pastors daily raised 
their hearts. The good sermons and prayers, morn- 
ing and evening, under the roof of heaven, to which 
their drums did call them for bells; the remonstrance 
very frequent of the goodness of their cause; of their 
conduct hitherto by a hand clearly divine; also 
Leslie's skill, and prudence, and fortune, made them 
as resolute for battle as could be wished. We were 
feared that emulation among our nobles might have 
done harm when they should be met in the lield; but 
such was the wisdom and authority of that old, 
little, crooked soldier, that all, with an incredible sub- 
mission, from the beginning to the end, gave over 
themselves to be guided by him, as if he had been 
great Solyman. Had you lent your ear in the 
morning, or especially at even, and heard in the 
tents the sound of some singing psalms, some ]5ray- 
ing, and some reading the Scripture, ye would have 
been refreshed. True, there was swearing, and curs- 
ing, and brawling, in some quarters, whereat we were 
grieved; but we hoped, if our camp had been a little 
settled, to have gotten some way for these misorders; 
for all of any fashion did regret, and all promised to 
do their best endeavours for helping all abuses. 
For myself, I never found my mind in better temper 
tlian it was all that time since I came from home, 
till my head was again homeward; for I was as 
a man who had taken my leave from the world, and 
was resolved to die in that service without return." 
This expedition ended in a treaty between the Scot- 
tish leaders anci their sovereign, in terms of which 
hostilities ceased for a few months. On tlie renewal 
of the insurrectionary war next year, Bnillie accom- 
jianietl the Scottish army on its march into England, 
and became the chronicler of its transactions. To- 
wards the end of the year 1640 he was selected by 
the Scottish leaders as a proper person to go to Lon- 
don, along with other commissioners, to prepare 
charges against Archbishop Laud for his innovations 
upjn the Scott isli church, which were alleged to 
have lieen tb.e origin of the war. He liad. in A]iril, 
before the expedition, published a pamphlet entitled 
Ladotsinm AvTOKaraKpicns: the Citittcibiirian's Sclf- 
C'Vrrieflon ; cr an F.-uioit Demonstration of the 
Avoai'ed Arminuinisine, J\\t'en\\ and Tyrannie of 
that Faetioti, by their (.non Confessions, which perhaps 
}io'nted him out as fit to take a lead in the ])rosecu- 
tions of the great Antichrist of Scotti>h I'resbvterv. 



Of this and almost all the other proceedings of his 
public life he has left a minute account in his letters 
and journals, which are preserved entire in the ar- 
chives of the Church of Scotland, and in the univer- 
sity of Glasgow, and of which excerpts were j)ublished 
in 2 vols. 8vo, Edinburgh, 1775. They were after- 
wards ])ublished in their entire form by the iJanna- 
tyne Club, in 3 vols. 410, in 1 841. '1 liese relicjues 
of Mr. Baillie form valuable materials of history. 

Not long after his return to his native country, in 
1642, he was appointed j(-)int-professor of divinity at 
Glasgow, along with Mr. iJavid Dickson, an equally 
distinguished, but less moderate, divine. It afl"<jrds 
some proof of the estimation in which he was now 
held, that he had the choice of this ai-i)ointment in 
all the four universities of Scotland. He jierformed 
his duties from this period till the Restoration, and 
at the same time attended all the General Assemblies 
as a member, except during an interval in 1643-6, 
when he was absent as adelegate to the Westminster 
assembly of divines. In this latter cajiacity he con- 
ducted himself in an unobtrusive manner, but fully 
concurred in the principles and views of the mure 
jjrominent men. It is obser\able from his letters 
that, with the pardonable earnestness of his age and 
party, he looked upon toleration as a thing fital to 
religion, and strenuously asserted the divine right of 
the Presbyterian church to be established inccjmjdete 
ascendancy and power as a substitute for the Church 
of lingland. From 1646 to 1649 he discharged his 
ordinary duties as a theological teacher without taking 
a leading part in public affairs. But in the latter 
year he was chosen by the church as the fittest person 
to carry its homage to King Charles II. at the 
Hague, and to invite that youthful monarch to assume 
the government in .Scotland, under the limitations 
and stipulations of the covenant. This duty he exe- 
cuted with a degree of dignity and propriety which 
could have been expected from no member of his 
church but one, who, like him, had spent several 
years in conducting high dii:ilomatic affairs in l"-r.g- 
land. Indeed, Mr. Baillie appears in ever\' transac- 
tion of his life to have been an accom])lished man 
of the world, and yet retaining, along with habits of 
expediency, the most perfect sincerity in his religious 
views. When the necessary introduction of the 
malignants into the king's service cau.-ed a strong 
division in the church in 165 1, Baillie, as might 
have been expected from his character and fcjrmer 
history, sided with the yielding or Re>olutioni>t 
]iarty, and soon became its jirincijml leader. On 
this account he and many other sincere men were 
charged by the Protesting and less wurldly ]iarty 
with a declension from the high principles of the 
covenant, a charge to which he, at lea>t, certainly 
was not liable. After the Restoration, though made 
principal of his college through court patronage, he 
scnquilously refused to accejU a l)i>ho[iric. and did. 
not hesitate to express his dissatisfaction with ilie re- 
introduction of Episcopacy. His health now iltclin- 
ing, he was visited by the new-m."<ie nril;ii:-lv p, 
to whom he thus freely expressed himself: "Mr. Ar.- 
drew,"said he, "I will not now call vou my lord. 
King Charles would have made me one ot il;e>e 
lords; but I do not find in the New 'rvstame:.; lb.."t 
Christ has any lords in his house." lie c ''!>;■ ii :e-i 
this form of religion and ecclesi.-'.stic.T! l; \cr:-n.u'.t .is 
"inconsistent with ."^crijiture, ci.'ntr.;:y 1 > j r.ie .\vA 
]iriniitive anti'juiiy, and dianietricall}' '■; : ■ ■-<. o to :!;e 
true interest of tlie ci'untry." He ox '. .L >. lO^-. 
in the sixtv-third vear of his n^e. 

Mr. Baillie. besides his /,-.'.V;v .v/.:' _?' .0 y :.V. and 
a variety of controversial 11:1:11] ■Idcis. ^-.i.t.-.'i'.e to the 
spirit of the times, was tlie ;u;:hor oi" .i :e~;'ec;aL!e 



5S 



ROBERT BAILLIE. 



and learned work, entitled Opus Historicnm et Chro- 
nologicum, which was published in folio at Amster- 
dam. He was a man of extensive learning — under- 
stood no fewer than thirteen languages, among which 
were Hebrew, Chaldee, Syriac, Samaritan, Arabic, 
and Ethiopic — and wrote Latin with almost August- 
ine elegance. He left a large family: one of his 
daughters becoming tlie wife of Walkinshaw of Bar- 
rowfield, was, by a strange chance, the ancestress of 
Miss Clementina Walkinshaw, well known from her 
connection with the history of Prince Charles Stuart 
— and also grandmother to the celebrated Heni-y 
Home, better known under the jutlicial designation 
of Lord Kamcs. 

BAILLIE, RoRERT, of Jer\-iswood, an eminent 
jiatriot of the reign of Cliarlcs II., was the son of 
tjeorge Baillie, of St. John's Kirk in Lanarkshire, 
cadet of the ancient family of Baillie of Lamington, 
who appears to have jnircliased tlie estate of Jervis- 
wood, also in Lanarkshire, in the reign of Charles L, 
from a family of the name of Livingstone. It is stated 
by the Jacobite, Robert Mylnc, in tlie publication 
called Foiiiitainhairs Xotcs, lliat the first circumstance 
which alienated the mind of Robert Baillie from the 
government was his marrying a daughter of Sir 
Archibald Johnstone of Warristoun, who, having 
borne a conspicuous part in the civil war from tlie 
beginning, was executed after the Restoration. 
Whatever be tlie truth of this allegation, Baillie 
appears before the year 1676 to have been otherwise 
allied to the nonconformist party. 

The incident which first brought him forward into 
view as a subject of persecution -svas one of those in- 
terferences in behalf of natural justice, where all sense 
of consequences is overborne by the exigency of the 
occasion. During the misgovernment of the Duke 
of Lauderdale, a wretched jjrofligate of the name of 
Carstairs had bargained with Archbishop Sharpe to 
undertake the business of an informer u])on an un- 
commonly large scale, havhig a troop of other in- 
formers under him, and enjoying a certain reward for 
each individual whom he could detect at the con- 
venticles, besides a share of the fines imposed upon 
them. It may be supposed that an individual who 
could permit himself to enter upon a profession of 
this kincl would not be very scrupulous as to the 
guilt of the persons whom he sought to make his 
prey. He accordingly appears to have, at least in 
one noted instance, pounced upon an individual who 
was ]KMfcclly innocent. This was the Rev. Mr. 
Kirkton, a nonconformist minister it is true, but 
one who had l>een cautious to keep strictly within 
the verge of the law. Kirkton was the lirother-in- 
law of .\Ir. Baillie of Jerviswood by his marriage to 
the sister of that gentleman; and he is eminent in 
Scotti.^ii literary history for a memoir of the church 
during his own times, which was of great service in 
manuscript to the historian Wodrow, and was at 
length ])uhl;shed in 1S17. One day in June, 1676, 
as Mr. Kirkton was walking along the High Street 
of lOdinburgh, Carstairs, whose jierson he <li<l not 
know, accosted him in a very civil manner, and ex- 
jiressed a desire to speak with him in jirivate. Mr. 
Kirkton, suspecting no evil, followed Carstairs to a 
very mean-hjoking house, near the common ])risi)n. 
Carstairs, who had no warrant to a|i])reluMid or 
detain Mr. Kirkton, went out to get one, locking the 
door upon his victim.' The unfortunate clergyman 
then perceived that he was in some danger, an(l jire- 
vailed ujion a ])erson in the house tf) go to seek his 
brother-in-law, Mr. I'aillie, and a]>]iri^c him of his 

I Liiirnct. Wodrow's account is slightly diftcrunt. 



situation. Carstairs, having in vain endeavoured to 
get the requisite number of privy-councillors to sign 
a warrant, now came back, resolved, it appears, to 
try at least if he could not force some money from 
Mr. Kirkton for his release. Just as they were 
about to confer upon this subject, Mr. Baillie came 
to the door, with several other persons, and called to 
Carstairs to open. Kirkton, hearing the voices of 
friends, took courage, and desired his captor either 
to set him free, or to show a warrant for his deten- 
tion. Carstairs, instead of doing either, drew a pocket- 
pistol, and Kirkton found it necessary, for his own 
safety, to enter into a personal struggle, and endea- 
vour to secure the weapon of his antagonist. The 
gentlemen without, hearing a struggle and cries of 
murder, burst open the door, and found Carstairs 
sitting upon Mr. Kirkton on the floor. Baillie drew 
his sword, and commanded the poltroon to come 
off, asking him at the same time if he had any war- 
rant for apprehending Mr. Kirkton. Carstairs said 
he had a warrant for conducting him to prison, but 
he utterly refused to show it, though Mr. Baillie said 
that if he saw any warrant against his friend, he 
would assist in canying it into execution. The 
wretch still persisting in saying he had a warrant, 
but was not bound to show it, Mr. Baillie left the 
place with Mr. Kirkton and other friends, having 
offered no violence whatever to Carstairs, but only 
threatened to sue him for unlawful invasion of his 
brother-in-law's person. 

It might have been expected from even a govem- 
ment so lost to all honour and justice as that which 
now prevailed in Scotland, that it would have had 
at least the good sense to overlook this unhappy 
accident to one of its tools. On the contrary, it was 
resolved to l)rave the popular feeling of right, by 
listening to the complaints of Carstairs. Through 
the influence of Archbishop Sharpe, who said that, 
if Carstairs was not countenanced, no one would be 
procured to apprehend fanatics afterwards, a majority 
of the council agreed to prosecute Baillie, Kirkton, 
and the other persons concerned. For this purpose, 
an antedated warrant was furnished to Carstairs, 
signed by nine of the councillors. Tlie Marquis of 
Atholl told Bishop Burnet that he had been one of 
the nine who lent their names to this infamous docu- 
ment. The whole case was therefore made out to 
be a tumult against the government; Baillie was 
fined in six thousand merks (/'318 sterling)," and his 
friends in smaller sums, and to be imprisoned till 
they should render payment. 

This award was so ojiposite, in every jiarllcular, 
to the principles of truth, honour, and justice, that, 
even if not directed against individuals connected 
with the popular cause, it could not have failed to 
excite general indignation. It appears that a re- 
spectable minority of the council itself was strongly 
opposed to the decision, and took care to let it be 
known at court. Mr. Baillie was therefore released 
at the end of four months, in consideration of pay- 
ment of one-half of his fine to the creature Carstairs. 
Lord Halton, however, who was at this time a kind 
of pro-regent under his brother Lauderdale, had 
interest to obtain tlie dismissal of his opponents from 
the council, namely, the inike of Hamilton, the 
Karls of Morton, Dumfries, and Kincardine, and the 
Lonis Cochrane and I'rimrose, whom he branded, 
for their conduct on this occasion, as enemies to the 
cluirch and favourers of conventicles. 

After this period nothing is known of Mr. Baillie 
till the year 1683, when he is found taking a ])romi- 
nent share in a scheme of emigration, agitaterl by a 

- Wudr'AV says /^^ao sterling, new edit. v. ii, p. 328. 



ROBERT I3AILLIE, 



SO 



number of Scottish gentlemen, who saw no refuge 
but this from the tyranny of the government. These 
gentlemen entered into a negotiation with the paten- 
tees of South Carolina, for permission to convey 
themselves thither, along with their families and 
dependants. Wliile thus engaged, Mr. Baillie was 
induced, along with several of his friends, to enter 
into correspondence and counsel with the heads of 
the Puritan party in England, who were now form- 
ing an extensive plan of insurrection, for the puqiosc 
of obtaining a change of measures in the government, 
though witli no ulterior view. Under the pretext 
of the American expedition. Lord Melville, Sir John 
Cochrane of Ochiltree, Mr. ]5aillie, and three others, 
were invited and repaired to London, to consult with 
the Duke of Monmouth, Sydney, Russell, and the 
rest of that party. This scheme was never ])roperly 
matured; indeed, it never was anything but a matter 
of talk, and had ceased to be even that, when a 
minor plot for assassinating the king, to which only 
a small number of the party were privy, burst ])re- 
maturely, and involved several of the chiefs, who 
were totally ignorant of it, in destruction. Sydney 
and Russell suflered for this crime, of wliich they were 
innocent; and Baillie and several other gentlemen 
were seized and sent down to be tried in Scotland.' 
The subsequent judicial proceedings were charac- 
terized by tlie usual violence and illegality of the time. 
Baillie endured a long confinement, during which 
he was treated very harshly, and not permitted to 
have the society of his lady, though she offered to go 
into irons, as an assurance against any attempt at 
facilitating his escape. An attempt was made to 
])rocure sufficient proof of guilt from the confessions 
wrought out of his nephew-in-law, the Earl of Tarras 
(who h.id been first married to the elder sister of the 
Duchess of Monmouth); but, this being found in- 
sufficient, his prosecutors were at last obliged to 
adopt the unlawful expedient, too common in those 
distracted times, of putting him to a purgative oatli. 
An accusation was sent to him, not in the form of an 
indictment, nor grounded on any law, but on a letter 
of the king, in which he was charged with a con- 
spiracy to raise rebellion, and a concern in the Rye- 
house Plot. He was told that, if he would not clear 
himself of these charges by his oath, he should be 
held as guilty, though not as in a criminal court, but 
only as before the council, who had no power to 
award a liigher sentence than fine and imi^risonment. 
As he utterly refused to yield to such a demand, he 
was fined by the council in ^6000, being about the 
value of liis whole estates. It was then supjwsed that 
the prosecution would cease, and that he would escajie 
with the doom of a captive. For several months he 
continued shut up in a loathsome prison, which had 
>uch an effjct upon his health that he was brought 
almost to the last extremity. Yet "all the while," 
to use tiie words of Bishop Ihtrnet,- ''lie seemed so 
compo>ed, and even so cheerfid, tliat his beliaviour 
loiiked like a reviving of the spirit of tlie noblest of 
the old Creeks or Romans, or rather of the ]'>rimitive 
Ciiristians ami fir^t martyrs in tliose last days of the 
churcli." At lengtli, i:)n the 23d of December, 16S4, 



1 Mr. R '.:.•. in his (T'-Si-t-.'iitii'ns on Mr. l-'ox s History, 
re'.itos th.it the hnp.j r.f a p,ird'in being held out to him, <in 
coniiition <if liis .^iviii;; inf 'rm.\tion respecting some friends 
supposed to he cn.,M.;ed with him. his answer was, " They 
who c\n m.\kc such a proposal to me neither know nie nor my 
country:" .">!i expression of which the latter part is amply 
justifu: 1 by fact, for. as Lord John Russell has justly obser\-ed, 
in his .l/f-w'.o'^ of I.or.i I'.'Uli.itii Russrll. " It is to the honour 
of Scotl.md, that [on this occasion! no witnesses came firward 
V iluntarilv to accuse their .associates, .as had been done in 
England." 

- I'urr.ot. being the nephew of Sir .-\rchibald Jcimstone, was 
cousin bv r.:arr;.i^o to Mr. Uaillio. 



he was brought before the court of justiciary. He 
was now so weak as to be obliged to appear at the 
bar in his night-gown, and take frequent applica- 
tions of cordials, which were supplied to him by his 
sister, the wife of Mr. Ker of Graden. The only 
evidence that could be pnxluced was the confessions 
f(jrced from his friends by torture, one of whom, the 
Rev. Mr. Carstairs, afterwards the di.stingui.shcd 
principal of the Edinlnngh university, had only 
emitted a declaration, on an express promise that 
no use was to be made of it. Mr. Baillie solemnly 
denied having been accessory to any conspiracy 
against the king's life, or being unfavourably dis- 
posed to monarchical government. He complained 
that his friends had been forced to bring forth untrue 
representations against him. Indeci, there can be 
no doubt that the whole extent of his offence was a 
desire to procure some amelioration of the measures, 
and not any change of the members of the govern- 
ment; we say desire, because it never cf)uld be proved 
that a single step had been taken in the matter, nor 
is there the least probability that it would have ever 
been heard of, but for the trials of several innocent 
persons. 

A cavalier and contemporary writer has alleged 
that Mr. Baillie conducted himself on his trial in a 
very haughty and scornful manner — "very huffy 
and proud" is the expression used — but this pro- 
bably is only the colour given by a political enemy 
to the Roman dignity which Burnet saw in his 
behaviour. After the evidence had been adduced, 
and when the lord-advocate had ended his charge, 
the following remarkaljle dialogue took place be- 
tween him and that officer : — 

"My lord, I think it very strange that you charge 
me with such abominable things; you may remember 
that when you came to me in person, you told me 
that such things were laid to my charge, but that 
you did not believe them. How then, my lord, did 
you come to lay such a stain upon me with so much 
violence? Are you now convince<l in your con- 
science that I am more gxiilty than before? ^'ou 
may remember what passed betwixt us in prison." 

The whole audience fixed their eyes upon the 
advocate, who appeared in no small confusion, and 
said, 

"Jerviswood. I own what you say. My thoughts 
there were as a private man; but wiiat I say here is 
by special direction of the privy-council. An<]," 
])ointing to Sir William Paterson, clerk, "he knows 
my orders." 

"Well," said Baillie, "if your lordship have one 
conscience for yourself, and another fir the coiiiicil, 
I pray God forgive you; I do. My lords,"" he added, 
"I trouble your lordships no further." 

The assize was empannelled at midnight, and sat 
till nine in the morning of the succeeding day, when 
a verdict of guilty was returned against Mr. Baillie, 
and he was sentenced to be executed that afternoon 
at the cross, and his lind)s to lie afterwards exliibited 
on the jails of four dilTerent Scottish towns. '1 lie 
reason for such jirecipitation was the tear ot h;s 
judges that a natural death would disappoint t!ie 
wishes of the government, wliich called iinpc-ra;i\ely 
at this moment for a public example to terri:>' i's 
opponents. ISaillie only said. '"My lord-, tlie ".nie 
is short, the sentence is sharp, but \ tliar.k n-.y ( ;."L 
who hath made me as fit to die a> v'^ii .tvc to l.'.c. 
On returning to tlie prison lie cxpericiicei wh.it 
Wodrow describes as "a wondcrhil nir::;rc of j^y, 
from the assurance he had th.Tt i:i a few hour.- he 
should he inconceivably hap;iy."' 

Mr. Baillie was attenfh-d to the -caf;''!! by his 
faithful and alVectionatc =:::cr. He \.X'\ ;.rc pared aii 



Co 



SIR DAVID BAIRD. 



address to the people; but knowing that he might 
be prevented from delivering it, he had previously 
given it to his friends in writing. It is said that 
the government afterwards offered to give up his 
body for burial, if his friends would agree to suppress 
this document. They appear to liave rejected the 
proposition. The unfortunate gentleman was so 
weak that he required to be assisted in mounting 
the ladder: he betrayed, however, no symptom of 
moral weakness. Just before being consigned to 
his fate, he said, in the self-accusing spirit of true 
excellence, "My faint zeal for the Protestant reli- 
gion has brought me to this end." His sister-in-law, 
with the stern virtue of her family, waited to the last.' 

"Thus," says Bishop Burnet, "a learned and 
worthy gentleman, after twenty months' hard usage, 
was brought to death, in a way so full, in all the 
steps of it, of the spirit and practice of the courts of 
inquisition, that one is tempted to think that tlie 
methods taken in it were suggested by one well 
studied, if not practised, in tliem. The only excuse 
that ever was jiretended for tliis infamous prosecu- 
tion was, tliat they were sure he was guilty ; and 
that the whole secret of the negotiation between the 
two kingdoms was intrusted to him; and that, since 
he would not discover it, all methods might be taken 
to destroy him. Xot considering wliat a precedent 
they made on this occasion, by which, if they were 
once possessed of an ill opinion of a man, they were 
to spare neither artifice nor violence, but to hunt 
him down by any means." 

Dr. Owen has testified in a strong manner to the 
great abilities of the Scottish Sydney. Writing to 
a Scottish friend, he said, "Vou have truly men of 
great spirits among you; there is, for a gentleman, 
ilr. Baillie of Jerviswood, a person of the greatest 
abilities I ever almost met with." 

Mr. Baillie's family was completely ruined by his 
forfeiture. He left a son, George Baillie, wlio, after 
his execution, was obliged to take refuge in Holland, 
whence he afterwards returned with the Prince of 
Orange, by wiiom he was restored to his estates. 
The wife of this gentleman was Miss Grizcl Hume, 
daughter of Sir Patrick Hume of Pohvarth, a fellow- 
patriot of Mr. Robert Baillie. The occasion of 
their meeting was very remarkable. Miss Grizel, 
when a very young girl, was sent by her father from 
the country, to endeavour to convey a letter to Mr. 
Baillie in prison, and bring back what intelligence 
she could, .'^he succeeded in this dirficult enteriirise; 
and having at the same time met witli Mr. Baillie's 
son, the intimacy was formed, wliicli was afterwards 
completed by their marriage. 

BAIRD, TiiK I\u;irr IIoNfiiKAiii.r. C]knekai. 
Sir D.WII), a distinguislied commander during the 
wars of the French revolution, was the second sur- 
viving son of William I'aird, I'-sf]., heir, by settle- 
ment, of his second cousin. Sir Jolni I'aird (jf New- 
byth, Bart. He entered the army, December i6, 
1772, as an ensign in the 2d foot, joined the regiment 
at Gibraltar, .Vj^iril, 1773, and returned to Britain in 
1776. Having l)een jiromoted to a lieutenancy in 
177S, he immediately after ol)tained a comi)any in 
the 73d, a regiment then just raised by Lord Mac- 
leod, with which he sailed for India, and arrived at 
Madras, January, 17S0. 

This vouni: ret'iment was here at once u^!lcrcd 



' " The I.ady Gr.iden, with r more th.in m.isctihne cour.Tge, 
attended him nn the sciffoM till he w.is quartered, and went 
with the hangman and saw his (luarters sodden, oylc-d, iSic." 
' F^untainhalCs Xotes, 117, ii3 . It is scarcely possible for an 
individnal accustomed to the feelings of modern society lu 
believe such a statement. 



into the trying and hazardous scenes of the war 
against Hyder Ali, whom the English Company 
had provoked by a shameful breach of faith into a 
hostility that threatened to ovenvhelm it. In July, 
1780, while the Company, exclusive of Lord Mac- 
leod's regiment, had only about 5000, men under 
arms, Hyder burst into the Carnatic with an army 
of 100,000 men, disciplined and commanded by 
French officers, and laid siege to Arcot, the capital 
of the only native prince friendly to the British. Sir 
Hector Munro, commander-in-chief of the Company's 
troops, set out to relieve this city on the 25th of 
August, expecting to be joined on the 30th by a 
large detachment then in the Northern Circars under 
Colonel Baillie. On learning this movement Hyder 
left Arcot, and threw himself in tlie way of Colonel 
Baillie. In order to favour, if possible, the approach 
of this officer. Sir Hector Munro, on the 5th of Sep- 
tember, changed his position a little, and advanced 
two miles on the Trepassore road, which brought 
him within a short distance from the enemy. Hyder 
tlien detached his brother-in-law Meer Saib, \\\\\\ 
8000 horse, to attack Colonel Baillie, and after- 
wards an additional force of 6000 infantry, 18,000 
cavalry, and twelve pieces of cannon, under his son 
the celebrated Tippoo. He at the same time made 
demonstrations on his front, to keep up the attention 
of Sir Hector and the main army. Baillie, though 
commanding no more than 2000 sepoys and a iii\: 
European companies, gained a complete victory over 
the immense force sent against him, but at the same 
time sent word to Sir Hector that, unless ]irovision 
were made for accomplishing a junction, he must 
certainly be cut off. The commander-in-chief held 
a council of war, when it was determined at all 
hazards to send a reinforcement, for the purpose of 
achieving the relief of this gallant officer. A small 
force was selected, consisting principally of the 
grenadier and infantiy companies of Lord Macleod's 
regiment, which, having received strict injunctions 
as to the necessity of a secret and expeditious inarch, 
set off towards Colonel Baillie's jjosition, under the 
command of Colonel Fletcher and Captain Baird. 
Hyder Ali had secret intelligence of this movement, 
and sent a detachment to cut it off; but Colonel 
Fletcher and Captain Baird, having fortunately con- 
ceived some suspicion of their guides, suddenly altered 
their line of march, and were thereby enabled to gain 
their jioint. Hyder was determined that Colonel 
Baillie, with his friends, should not advance so safely 
to the main army. He therefore, with the most con- 
summate ability, and under his own personal inspec- 
tion, prepared an andniscade at a particidar ])ass 
through which they would have to march. This 
part of the road he had occu]:>ied and enfiladed with 
several Ijatteries of cannon, behind which lay large 
bodies of his best foot, while he himself, with almost 
his whole force, was ready to support the attack. 
While these real dispositions were made, a cloud of 
irregular cavalry was eni])loyed in several motions 
on the side of Conjeveram, in order to divert the at- 
tention of the English camp. 

The morning of the loth of September had 
scarcely dawned, when the silent and expectant 
enemy perceived Colonel P)aillie's little army advanc- 
ing into the very toils planted to receive it. The 
amlniscade reserved their fire with admirable cool- 
ness and self-command, till the unhajipy Fnglisli 
were in the midst of them. The army marched in 
column. On a sudden, while in a narrow delile, 
a battery of twelve guns poured a storm of giape- 
shot into their right (lank. The English faced 
al))ul; another battery immediately opened on their 
rear. They had no alternative, therefore, but to 



SIR DAVID BAIRD. 



6l 



advance; other batteries met them here likewise, 
and in less than half an hour 57 pieces of cannon 
were so brouj^ht to bear on them as to penetrate 
into every part of the British line. By seven o'clock 
in the morning the enemy poured down upon them 
in thousands, and every Englishman in the army was 
engage<l. Captain Baird, at the head of his grena- 
diers, fought with the greatest heroism. Surrounded 
and attacked on all sides by 25,000 cavalry, by 30 
regiments of sepoy infantry, besides Ilyder All's 
European corps, and a numerous artillery playing 
upon them from all quarters within grape-shot dis- 
tance, yet this heroic column stood firm and un- 
daunted, alternately facing their enemies on every 
side of attack. The French officers in Ilyder's 
camp beheld the scene with astonishment, which 
was increased when, in the midst of all this tumult 
and extreme peril, they saw the British grenadiers 
performing their evolutions with as much precision, 
coolness, and steadiness, as if under the eyes of a 
commander on a parade. At length, after a dubious 
contest of three hours (from six in the morning 
till nine), victory began to declare for the English, 
when an unlucky accident altered the fortune of the 
day. The tumbrils containing the ammunition sud- 
denly blew up, with two dreadful explosions, in the 
centre of the British line. The whole face of their 
column was laid open, and their artiller)' overturned 
and destroyed. Tippoo Saib instantly seized the 
moment of advantage, and, without waiting for 
orders, fell with the Mogul and Carnatic horse 
into the broken square, which had not yet time to 
form anew. This attack by the enemy's cavalry 
being immediately seconded by the French corps, 
and by the first line of infantrv-, determined at once 
the fate of our unfortunate army. Out of 4000 
sepoys and 800 Europeans who had commenced this 
engagement, only about 200 of the latter survived. 
Colonel Fletcher was among the slain, and Captain 
I5aird was wounded in four ]ilaces. When he and 
Colonel Baillie, with other captive officers, were 
taken before Hyder Ali, the latter gentleman said 
to the barbarous chief, "Your son will inform you 
that you owe the victory to our disaster, rather than 
to our defeat." Ilyder angrily ordered them from 
his presence, and commanded them instantly to 
prison. The slaughter among the Mysore troops 
was very great, amounting, it is said, to three times 
the whole British army. When Sir Hector Munro 
learned the unhappy fiite of his detachment, he found 
it necessary to retreat to Madras. 

Captain Baird, with the officers, remained in 
a dungeon in one of Ilyder's forts for three days and 
a half; he was chained by the leg to another prisoner, 
as much of the slaughter in Ilyder's army was 
attributed to the grenadiers. At length, in July, 
17S4, he was released and joined his regiment at 
A rot. In 17S7 he removed with his regiment 
(now >tylcd the 71st) to Bombay, and returned to 
Madras next ye.ar. On the 5th' of June, 17S9. he 
received the majority of the 71st, and in October 
ol)tainod leave of absence, ami returned to Britain. 
In 1 79 1 he returned as lieutenant-colonel of the 
71-t, ar. 1 joined the army under the Marquis 
Conuvai!;-. .\s commander of a brigade of sepovs, 
he was present at the attack of a number of droogs, 
or hili-f'irts. and at the siege of Seringapatam, in 
1 79 1 an'! 1702; and likewi-e at the storming of 
Tijipo > Sultaun's lines and camps in the island of 
Seringnpatam. In 1793 he commanded a briga le 
of Ev.r jpe.ins, and was present at the siege of Pondi- 
cherry. lie received a colonelcy in 170V In 
(,)ctu!)er, I7'i7. he ein'oarked at Madras witli h;^ 
rcg-inen; i,v Europe; in December, w'r.en he arrive 1 



at the Cape of Goo<l Ho])e, he was appointed 
brigadier-general, and placed on that staff, in com- 
man<l of a brigade. June 18, 179S, he was appointed 
major-general, and returned to the staff in India. 
In January, 1799, he arrived at Madra-,, in command 
of two regiments of foot, together with the drafts of 
the 28th dragoons. May 4, he commanded the 
storming jiarty at that distinguished action the 
assault of .Seringapatam; when, in requital of his 
brilliant services, he was presented by the armv, 
through the commander-in-chief, with the state sw(jnl 
of Tippoo Sultaun, and also with a dress-sword 
from the field-officers serving under his immediate 
command at the assault. 

The eminent merit of I'rigadicr-gencral Baird was 
now fully known and acknowledgetl by the govern- 
ment at home. He was therefore, in 1800, ap- 
pointed to the command of an expedition against 
Batavia, but which was afterwards sent to Egypt. 
He landed at Coseir in June, crossed the desert, 
and, embarking on the Kile, descended to Grand 
Cairo; whence he set out for Alexandria, which he 
reached a few days before it surrendered to (Jencral 
Hutchison. Next year he led the Egyptian-Indian 
army overland to India, where he was concerned in 
various military transactions. His services, ho\\ ever, 
being soon after superseded by .Sir Arthur Wellesley 
(afterwards the illustrious protector of Europe), he 
sailed for Britain with his staff, March, 1803, and 
after a tedious voyage, during which he was taken 
prisoner by a French privateer, but afterwards re- 
taken, he arrived in England in November. 

Sir David Baird was received at the Briti^^h court 
with great distinction. In December he received 
the royal permission to wear the Turkish order of 
the Crescent. In June, 1804, he received the honour 
of knighthood; and on the iSth of August following 
became a knight -companion of the Bath. With the 
increased rank of lieutenant-general he commanded 
an expedition which sailed in October, 1S05, for the 
Cape of Good Hope. Landing there, January 6, 
1S06, he attacked and beat the Dutch army, and en 
the iSth received the surrender of the cohny. 
Being recalled, he arrived in Britain, April, 1S07, 
and was shifted from the colonelcy of the 54'''' 
which he had held for some years, to that of the 
24th, and placed on the foreign staff under Genera! 
Lord Cathcart. He commamled a division at the 
siege of Copenhagen, where he was twice slightly 
wounded; and returned with the army in Novendxr. 

After a short period of service in Ireland, Sir 
David sailed in command of an armament of io,cco 
men for Conmna, wliere he arrived in November, 
iSoS, and formed a junction with the army ur.ikr 
General Sir Jolin Moore. He commanded the Ur-i 
division of that army, and in the battle of Coriinr.r.. 
January 16, 1809. he lost his left arm. 

By tiie death of Sir John Moore in this act;, v. 
.Sir David succeeded to the chief command, ar.'! l.r. 1 
the honour of communicating intelligence ot tl.e 
victory to goverimient. (_^n this (icca.-inn he recent'', 
for the fourth time in his liff. the thank- of j r.i^;;,- 
ment, and, Ai^il 13, was create'! a baronet, v..: a 
very hnninirable ai'niorial bearings a':i;--i\e t'l tie 
transactions of his life, .\fter thi> period be r.^v. r 
.again appeared i:i active service. In i!sio !..• 
married Miss Preston Camid'ell, of Fe.T.t. v. er .'.: i 
Lochlane, Perth-hire, by whom lie '.ef: no ;--•,:•,. \-\ 
1S14 he was j^ronioteil'to t!-e rr.-ik '-( -<j:.^r..l. ?.■:. I 
in iSlo became goven-.or 1 f K;r.-a!e ::'i lv'-'.:.::\ r.r. ! 
in 1S27 of Fort George in the i;' iili ot >C' t!a:,<!. 
T!i;> lirave ve'eran died at r.n a'ivar.ce I a,". .\;:c->t 
iS. lS::o. a; lii- -eat r.[ Fer:i-. ^v■ r i:: IVrtl-l^ire. 
Il.-iadv, vh '-urvive : Iiin; :::. I>4:. create ; a n.e: u- 



62 



WALTER BALCANQUEL- -ALEXANDER BALFOUR. 



ment to his memory on the top of a romantic hill, 
named Tom-na-chaistel (i.e. the hill of the castle), 
in the neighbourhood of Femtower. 

BALCANQUEL, Walter, D.D., an eminent 
divine of the seventeenth century, was the son of the 
Rev. Walter Balcanquel, who was a minister of 
Edinburgh for forty-three years, and died in August, 
l6l6. Dr. Walter Balcanquel was born at Edin- 
burgh. It has been supposed that he was himself 
a minister of Edinburgh; but probably the writer 
who makes this statement only mistakes him for his 
father, who bore the saine name. He entered a 
bachelor of divinity at Pembroke Hall, Oxford, 
where, September 8th, 1611, he was admitted a 
fdlouK He appears to have enjoyed the patronage 
and friendship of King James, antl his first prefer- 
ment was to be one of the royal chaplains. In 1617 
he became Master of the Savoy in the Strand, 
London; which office, however, he soon after re- 
signed in favour of Mark Antony de- Dominis, 
Archbishop of Spalatro, who came to England on 
account of religion, and became a candidate for the 
king's favour. In 161S Dr. Balcanquel was sent to 
the celebrated synod of Dort, as one of the repre- 
sentatives of the Church of Scotland. He has given 
an account of a considerable part of the proceedings 
of this grand religious council, in a series of letters 
to Sir Dudley Carleton, which are to be found in 
The Go/Jill Remains of the ever-memorable Mr. yolin 
Hales of Eaton, 4to, 1673. In 1621, the Archbishop 
of Spalatro having resigned the mastership of the 
Savoy, Dr. Balcanquel was re-appointed; and on 
the 1 2th of March, 1624, being then doctor of 
divinity, he was installed Dean of Rochester. George 
Heriot, at his death, February I2th, 1624, ordained 
Dr. Balcanquel to be one of the three executors of 
his last will, and to take the principal charge of the 
establishment of his hospital at Edinburgh. Pro- 
bably the experience which he had already acquired 
in the management of the Savoy Hospital might be 
the chief cause of his being selected for this impor- 
tant duty. Heriot appointed Dr. Balcanquel, by 
his will, "to repair with all the convenience he can, 
after my ilecease, to the town of Edinburgh," in 
order to conclude with the magistrates about the 
busine.-.s of the hos])ital; allowing him, for his pains, 
in addition to the sum of one hundred merks, which 
he enjoyed as an ordinary executor, one hundred 
pounds sterling, payal)le by two equal instalments — 
the first three months after the decease of the 
testator, and the second at the completion of the 
hospital. 

Dr. Balcanquel is entitled to no small commen- 
dation fir the able manner in which he discharged 
this great and onerous trust. The statutes, which, 
in terms of the testator's will, were drawn \\\) by 
him, are dated 1627, and do great credit to his 
sagacity and ])ractical good sense. 

Dr. Balcanquel's next appearance in the ])ublic 
concerns of his native cmintry was of a less liap|iy 
character. In 163S, when Charles I. sent down the 
Marquis of Hamilton to Scotland, to treat with the 
Covenanters, the Dean of Rochester accompanied his 
grace in the capacity of chaplain. What was his 
external behaviour on this occasion we do not k:io\v; 
but it was afterwards siu'mised by the Covenanters, 
that he had been dejiutcd by Archbisluip Laud as 
a sjiy, at once upon the marquis, who was su-pccted 
of moderation, and the people with whom he was 
dealing. It is asserted by Sir James Balfour, in his 
^[emorialls of State, that Dr. Balcanquel also com- 
municated intelligence of all that hajijiencd in Scot- 
land to Signer George Con, the iMjj;e's legate, "a.. 



some of his intercepted letters can beare recorde." 
Early in the ensuing year was published an apolo- 
getical narrative of the court-proceedings, under the 
title of His Alajesties Lar;e;e I)eelaratio>i, eoneerniitg 
the Late Tumults in Scotland, which by universal 
and apparently uncontradicted report was ascribed 
to the pen of Dr. Balcanquel. While this work was 
received by the friends of the king as a triumphant 
vindication of his attempts upon the purity of the 
Scottish church, it only excited new indignation in 
the minds of the outraged people, who soon after 
appeared in arms at Dunse Law, to defend their 
religious freedom with the sword. On the 14th of 
May, 1639, at the veiy time when the armies were 
about to meet on the borders, Dr. Balcanquel, ap- 
parently in requital of his exertions, was installed 
Dean of Durham. He had now rendered himself 
a marked man to the Scottish Presbyterians, and 
accordingly his name is frequently alluded to in their 
publications as an ''''incendiary.'''' Under this char- 
acter he was denounced by the Scottish estates, July 
29, 1641, along with the Earl of Traquair, Sir John 
Hay, clerk register, Sir Robert Spottiswoode, and 
Maxwell, Bishop of Ross, all of whom were regarded 
as the principal cruses of the war between the king 
and his people. In the Canterhurian^s Self convic- 
tion, a pamphlet written in 1641, by the Rev. Robert 
Baillie, against Archbishop Laud, he is spoken of 
in a style of such asperity, as might have convinced 
him that, in the event of a complete triumph of the 
Presbyterian party, he would share in the ])roceed- 
ings which were now directed against that unhappy 
prelate. Accordingly, the very next year, when the 
king could no longer protect his partizans. Dr. Bal- 
canquel was forced from his mastership of the Savoy, 
plundered, sequestrated, and obliged to flee from 
London. Repairing to Oxford, he attached himself 
to the precarious fortunes of his sovereign, and for 
several years afterwards had to shift about from 
place to place, wherever he could find security for 
his life. At length, having taken refuge in Chirk 
Castle, Denbighshire, he died there in a very cold 
season, on Christmas day, 1645. ^^^ "■'^^ buried 
next day in the parish church of Chirk, where, some 
years after, a splendid monument was erected to his 
memory by a neighbouring royalist, Sir Thomas 
Middleton of Chirk Castle. 

BALFOUR, Alexander. This novelist, ]-]oet. 
and miscellaneous writer was a native of the jxirish 
of Monikie, Forfarshire, and was born on the 1st of 
March, 1767. As he was a twin, and born of 
parents in humble life, his support in childhood 
and means of education might have equally been 
])recarious, had he not been sup]5orted in boyhood 
l)y a friend of the family, who also bestowed w^on 
him such a religious training ns not only developed 
his talents, but fitted him fur those adversities which 
were afterwards to be Ids lot. 

Having received a very limited education at the 
parish school, where, however, he distinguished him- 
self at the age of twelve years by his attempts in 
English composition, Alexander Balfour was a]>])ren- 
ticed to a weaver; but disliking this occuiiatitni, 
which gave no sco]K' for his growing talents, he 
returned home, and betook himself to the more con- 
genial attempt of teaching a ])rivate school. In this 
way he also taught himself, and during the intervals 
of his daily toil gave proofs of his growing jirofici- 
ency, by writing several articles for the ])rovincial 
newspapers, and also for Dr. Anderson's miscellan)-. 
The lice. After he had wielded the ferula long 
enough in a rustic seminary to find that he was fit 
fjr S'jmelhiiig belter, Balfour in his twenty-sixth 



ALEXANDER BALFOUR — 

year removed to the thriving town of Arbroath, and 
became clerk to a sail-cloth manufacturer, on the 
death of whom he entered into partnership in 
business with the widow of the deceased; and upon 
her death, in 1800, he took another partner into the 
firm. A government contract into which they had 
entered for supplying the navy with canvas made 
their business a prosperous one, and lialfour, now in 
circumstances of comfort, was able to cultivate his 
literary tastes, and correspond with the learned and 
talented of the Scottish capital. Having married 
also in 1794, the year after his arrival in Arbroath, 
he, in 1814, when he found himself father of a rising 
familv, removed to a country residence at Trottick, 
near Dundee. Here he also undertook the manage- 
ment of the branch of a London house which for 
many years had been connected with his own firm, 
and into which he embarked his whole fortune. 
But it was an unfortunate mercantile speculation, as 
in 1815 the mercantile reaction which had occurred 
on the sudden restoration of peace ruined the London 
establishment, and Balfour found himself reduced 
by the unforeseen stroke to utter bankmptcy. 

Being thus reduced to his original poverty, with 
the bitterness of disappointment and failure added 
to it, the subject of this memoir was fain to accept 
the situation of manager at a manufacturing establish- 
ment in Balgonie, Fifeshire. Resigning this appoint- 
ment, he afterwards, in 1818, removed to Edinburgh, 
where he became a clerk in the establishment of 
Mr. Blackwood, the eminent publisher. Here how- 
ever a worse calamity than that of mere bankruptcy 
in fortune awaited him, for in 1819 symptoms of 
paralysis in his constitution began to appear, which 
in October became so confirmed that he was obliged 
to be moved in a wheeled chair. It was well that 
the vigour of his mind and his literary aptitudes were 
still untouched, as these were henceforth to fomi his 
only occupation as well as means of subsistence. 

Being now an author by compulsion as well as 
choice, Balfour bravely girded himself for the task; 
and his first production under these circumstances, 
and upon which he had been some time previously 
employed, was the novel entitled Campbdl, or the 
Probationer, which was published in 1819. It was 
a subject seUlom attempted, as it comprised the 
literary exertions, the privations, the sorrows, and 
disappointments of a licentiate of the church scram- 
bling for the bare means of life wjiile in search of a 
living — the manifold changes of occupation he must 
undergo, and the unmerited rebuffs he must endure 
in such a pilgrimage, now happily so rare, but 
which were so abundant about forty years ago, out 
of which Balfour contrived to manufacture a mar- 
vellous talc of mirth, pathos, and varied incident. 
It was suited to the day and has now passed into 
oblivion; but at its appearance it became highly 
popular, and being published anonymously, tlie 
interot of it was heightened, an<l the public was 
an\i<ius to know the name and circumstances of the 
author. After tliis his pen was not allowed to lie 
idle, and from his wheeled chair his productions 
issued with a rapidity that would have been wonder- 
ful, had nut auth')r>h:p l)een not merely his only occu- 
pation but hi> solace. In the same year that his 
novel of ('.'/;///',•// a[)|>eared, he edited the poetical 
works of his deceased friend Richard Gall, to which 
he also >u]')jilicd a l)iogi-a]i]iical preface. In 1S22 he 
produced a three-volunieii novel enlilletl The Far in 0' s 
Three Dan^hter;^ and tlii> in 1S23 was followed hv 
The Fouitd'.nte; of GleittJiont, or the Smu^eilers Caz\\ 
also in three volumes. It was unfortunate, however, 
that the last two novels proceeded from the Minerva 
press, a circumslaace sufikient to condemn them to 



•SIR ANDREW BALFOUR. 



63 



neglect let their merits l>e what they might. It wa.s 
not to prose alone that Balfour confined himself, 
and in 1820 he j)ubli>>hed Contemplation, and other 
JWnts, in one volume 8vo, which added considerably 
to his literary reputation. To the Scots Maj^azine 
he had long been a contributor, and on the establish- 
ment of Constable's EJudmri^li Mcrraziue his services 
were secured for it by Thomas I'ringle, its editor. 
His contributions to this periodical during tlie nine 
years of its existence were so numerous, that of 
themselves they would have filled three octavo 
volumes; and the articles embraced a variety of 
themes, but chiefly the manners of .Scottish rural 
life — the theme in which his commencing novel (-f 
Campbell had excelled, and in which he showed 
himself comjiletely at home. To Constable's Ma^^a- 
zine he also contributed many articles in verse, the 
chief of which were "Characters omitted in Crabbe's 
Parish Register." In these the delineations were so 
truthful and striking, and the versification so musical 
and terse, that they were perused with jdeasure and 
surprise, and thought to be scarcely inferior t(j those 
of Crabbe himself. In consequence of this favour- 
able reception, Balfour was induced to publish these 
sketches in one volume in 1825. In 1827, in con- 
sequence of an application from Mr. Joseph Hume, 
M.P., Mr. Canning conferred on Balfour a treasury 
donation of ;i^ioo, in consideration of his genius and 
misfortunes. Alexander Balfour, in addition to his 
other literary labours, was until his death a copious 
contributor to the Ediuhu7-;;;h Literary Gazette. 
The last novel which he published was Ilr^ldand 
Mary, in four volumes, a work of considerable 
beauty and pathos, and soon after he died on the 
I2th of September, 1829. After his death, a volume 
of his remains was collected and published under 
the title of Weals and IVild-Jlim-ers, by -Mr. D. .M. 
Moir, M.D., who also prefixed an excellent memoir 
of the author. 

During the long illness of Alexander Balfour, and 
the necessity of constant labour for the wants of the 
day, he bore up not only with resignation ami 
patience, but constant cheerfulness. Although so 
long a prisoner to his chair, a continual smile was 
upon his lips; and notwithstanding an impedimerit 
in his s]:)eech, the effect of his malady, his conversa- 
tion was always cheerful, and enriched with thouglit 
and humour. lie was also rigidly temperate in his 
habits, affectionate in his relationships of father and 
husband, and religious in his feelings and jirincij'les. 
U]K)n few indeed have misfortunes and sufferings sat 
more amiably than upon Alexander Balfour. 

BALFOUR, Sir Andkkw, Bart., M.D., who first 
introduced the dissection of the liumr.n body into 
.Scotland, and that at a very superstitious perioi!; 
who ])rojected the first hos])ital in the couiury for 
the relief fif disease and jioverty at the public exjier.se : 
who was the founder of the botanic garden at 1 Jiin- 
burgh, and almost the father of the science in Set- 
land; who planned the Royal College 1 >f I'h} -ici.Ti> ex 
L<liid)urgh; and bequeathed to the juib'.ic a mii-euni. 
which at that time would have iieen an orn.inient t" 
any miiversity t>r any metrojiolis — \\.-.s the t";.;li ni; i 
youngest son of Sir Mich.acl Balfur oi" 1 »i.:,:n} ir.r 
in I-'ife, and v,-as l><irn at tliat place on tlie i^tii • : 
January. ir>,>0. lie jirosecuted liis sti'.'iies -.n t;.' 
university uf .^t. Andrews, v.here he to,.k liis ,li,,;rer 
uf.\.M. At this ]ieri"d l:i> educati' 'ii w.is >\:: x; :i:- 
teni.Ied by his brother >:r James I'.ali'' iur. li.e Lur.. ;> 
antiquary, an.d lyoii kif.g-.^t-arnis to Li'..-!:!'.- 1.. \\\\" 
was about thirt_\- years olier lli.m l-.iniseil. .\t col- 
lege he fir-t disc' ivt red his attncl.nie:.: to l-tany. 
wlricli in hitn is said to b.ave leii to t;:c stU'.iy ct 



64 



SIR ANDREW BALFOUR. 



l)hysic, instead of being, as it generally is, a hand- 
maid to that art. Quitting the university about the 
year 1650, he removed to London, where his medi- 
cal studies were chiefly directed by the celebrated 
ILarvey, by Sir Theodore Mayernc the distinguished 
physician of King James L, and various other emi- 
nent practitioners. He afterwards travelled to Blois 
in France, and remained there for some time, to see 
the botanic garden of the Duke of Orleans, which 
was then the b(?st in Europe, and was kept by his 
countrvman Dr. Morison. Here he contracted a 
warm friendship for that great botanist, which con- 
tinued unimpaired while they lived. From Blois he 
went to Paris, where, for a long time, he prosecuted 
his medical studies with great ardour. Hccompleted 
his eilucation at the university of Caen, from which 
he received the degrees of bachelor and doctor of 
physic, on the 20th of .September, 1661. 

Returning to London soon afterwards. Dr. Balfour 
was introduced to Charles H., who named him as 
the most proper person to attend the young Earl of 
Rochester on his continental travels. After an 
absence of four years, he returned with his pupil in 
1667. During their tour he endeavoured, and at 
that time not without some appearance of success, to 
recall that abandoned young nobleman to the paths 
of virtue, and to inspire him with the love of learn- 
ing. Rochester hiniself often acknowledged, and to 
Bishop Burnet in particular, only three days before 
his death, how much he was bound to love and 
honour Dr. Balfour, to whom, next to his parents, 
he thought he owed more than to all the world. 

On returning to his native country, Balfour settled 
at St. Andrews as a physician. "He brought with 
him," says Dr Walker, in his Essays on Natural 
Ilistoyy, "the best library, especially in medicine 
and natural history, that had till then appeared in 
Scotland; and not only these, but a perfect know- 
ledge of the languages in which they were written; 
likewise many unpublished manuscripts of learned 
men, a series of antique medals, modern medallions, 
and pictures and busts, to form the painter and the 
architect; the remarkal^le arms, vestments, and orna- 
ments of foreign countries; numerous mathematical, 
philosophical, and surgical instruments, which he 
not only jiossessed, but used; with operations in 
surgery till then unknown in this country; a com- 
plete cabinet with all the simples of the materia 
vtedica, and new compositions in pharmacy; and 
large collections of the fossils, plants, and animals, 
not only of ilie foreign countries he traversed, but of 
the mo-t distant parts of the world." 

Dr. Balfour's merit was too conspicuous to suffer 
him to remain long at .St. Andrews. Li the year 
1670 he removed to Ivlinburgh, where he imme- 
diately came into great practice. Here, among other 
improvements, he prosecuted the manufacture of 
paper, and was the means of introducing that valu- 
able art into the country —though fjr many years it 
remained in a state of complete or nearly complete 
dormancy; the people deriving stationery articles of 
all kinds from Holland. Adjoining to his house 
he had a small botanic garden, which he furnished 
by the seeds he received from his f)reign correspon- 
dents; and in this garden he raised many plants 
which were then fn-.>t introcluced into Scotland. 
One of his fellow-labourers in tiiis dc])artment was 
Patrick Murray (jf Livingston, whom he had initiated 
into the study of natural iiistory. This young gentle- 
man, who enjoyed an anijile fortune, formcil at his 
seat in the country a botanic garden, containing 1000 
species of ])Iants, which at that ])eriod was a veiy 
large collection. He traversed the wlioh; of France 
in que.-.t of the plants of tiiat country; and on hi. 



way to Italy he prematurely died of a fever. Soon 
after his death Dr. Balfour transferred Murray's col- 
lection from Livingston to Edinburgh; and with it, 
joined to his own, he had the merit of laying the 
foundation of the public botanic garden. The 
necessary expense of this new institution was at first 
defrayed by Dr. Balfour, Sir Robert Sibbald, and 
the Faculty of Advocates. But at length the city 
allotted a piece of ground near Trinity College church 
for a public garden, and out of the revenues of the 
university allowed a certain sum for its support. 
As the first keeper of this garden, Dr. Balfour selected 
Mr. James Sutherland; who, in 1684, published a 
work entitled Hcrtus Edinhurgcnsis. (See Suther- 
land.) The new institution soon became consider- 
able: plants and seeds were sent from Morison at 
Oxford, Watts at London, Marchant at Paris, Her- 
man at Leyden, and Spottiswood at Tangier. From 
the last were received many African plants, \\hich 
flourished in this country. 

Such efforts as these, by a native Scotsman, oc- 
curring at a time when the attention of the country 
seems to have been almost exclusively devoted to 
contending systems of church-government, are tndy 
grateful to contemplate. It is only to be lamented, 
that the spirit which presided over them was pre- 
mature in its appearance; it found no genial field to 
act upon, and it was soon forgotten in the prevailing 
distraction of the public mind. Sir Andrew Balfour 
was the morning-star of science in Scotland, but he 
might almost be said to have set before the approach 
of day. 

He was created a baronet by Charles II., which 
seems to indicate that, like most men of literary and 
scientific character in that age, he maintained a senti- 
ment of loyalty to the existing dynasty and govern- 
ment, which was fast decaying from the nation. 
His interest with the ministiy, and with the munici- 
pality of Edinburgh, seems to have always been con- 
siderable, and was uniformly exerted for the public 
good and for the encouragement of merit. 

Upon his settlement in Edinburgh, he had found 
the medical art taught in a very loose and irregular 
manner. In order to place it on a more respectable 
footing, he planned, with Sir Robert Sibbald, the 
Royal College of Physicians; and of that respectable 
society his brethren elected him the first president. 
When the college undertook the publication of a 
riiarmacopcTia, the whole arrangement of the viatcria 
vicdica was committed to his particular care. P'or 
such a task he was eminently qualified by his skill 
in natural history. This jierformance made its ap- 
pearance in 1685; and, in the ojiinion of Dr. Cullen, 
it is superior to M\y f/ian/iaco/'ifia of that era. 

Not long bef )re his decease, his desire to promote 
the science of medicine in his native country, joined 
to the universal humanity of his disposition, led him 
to project the foundation of an hospital in Edinburgh. 
The institution was at first narrow and confined, but 
it survived to be exjianded into full sha])e, as the 
Royal Infirmary, under the care of Oeorge Drum- 
mond. Sir Andrew died in 1694, in the sixty-fourth 
year of his age, after a severe conflict \\\\h the gout 
and other jiainfu! disorders; which afforded him an 
opportunityof dis])laying, upon theap])r()ach of death, 
those virtues and that equanimity which had dis- 
tinguished him during his life. His person, like his 
mind and manners, was elegant. I le was possessed 
of a handsome figure, witli a pleasing and expres- 
sive countenance; of a graceful elocution; and, by 
his natural disposition, as well as his long intercourse 
with the higher ranks in society, of a most courteous 
and ]X)lite demeanour. A \)Y\n\. of him was executed 
at Paris; l>ut no cojiy is known to exist. 



SIR JAMES BALFOUR. 



His library and museum were the anxious result 
of fourteen years of travellinfj, and between twenty 
and thirty more of correspondence. For their accom- 
modation he had built an addition to his house when 
he had nearly arrived at his fortieth year; but after the 
building was completed, he found himself so infirm 
as to be unable to place them in that order which he 
intended. After his death his library, consistin}^ of 
about 3000 volumes, besides manuscripts, was sold, 
we sup|)ose by public auction. There is a printed 
catalogue still extant. His museum was deposited 
in the hall which was, till 1829, occupied as the uni- 
versity library. There it remained many years, use- 
less antl neglected; some parts of it falling to inevit- 
able decay, and other parts being abstracted. "Yet, 
even after 1750," says Dr. Walker, "it still continued 
a considerable collection, whicii I have good reason 
to remember, as it was the sight of it, about that 
time, that first inspired me with an attachment to 
natural history. .Soon after that period," to pursue 
a narrative so deeply disgraceful to the age and the 
institution referred to, "it was dislodged from the 
hall where it had been long kept; was thrown aside, 
and exposed as lumber; was further and further di- 
lapidated, and at length almost com])letely demol- 
ished. In the year 1782, out of its niiiis and rubbish 
I extracted many pieces still valuable and useful, 
and placed them here in the best order I could. 
These, I hope, may remain long, and be considered 
as so many precious relics of one of the best and 
greatest men this country has produced." 

From the account that has been given of Sir An- 
drew r>alfour, every person conversant in natural 
history or medicine must regret that he never ap- 
peared as an author. To his friend Mr. Murray of 
Livingston he .addressed a series of familiar letters, 
for tiie direction of his researches while abroad. 
Tiicse letters, forming the only literary relics of 
15alfour, were subsequently published by his son, in 
t!ie year 1700. 

BAiiFOUH, Sir James, an eminent lawyer and 
public character of the sixteenth century, was a son 
of Ralfour of Monquhanny, in Fife, a very ancient 
family. In youth, being designed for the church, 
he made considerable proficiency, not only in ordinary 
literature, but in the study of divinity and law; which 
were all alike necessary in those times for an ecclesi- 
astic, on account of the mixed character which the 
age atlmitted to be assumed by such individuals. 
Balfour, while still a young man, was so unfortunate 
as to join with the conspirators who, after assassin- 
ating Cardinal Beaton, held out the castle of St. 
Andrews against the governor .Vrran. He seems. 
however, not to have Ijeen a very cordial parti/an of 
the consjiirators. John Knox, in his own vigorous 
and plain-spoken maimer, styled him the Blasphan- 
0!ts Baljatir, on account of his having refused to 
communicate along with his reforming associates. 
BaUour shared the fate of his companions in being 
sent to tile French galleys,' and was confined in the 



* The f >!I.i\vitv.,' iiii-.-'iotc of r,.-ilfoiir in connection with Knox 
i> rel.itcd liy 1 >r. .M(.ric : -•' I'hc g.Tlleys returned to .Scotl.ind 
in suiiiiner 1545, as Mc.\r .is I can collect, and continued for a 
considerable time on the e.Lst coast, t.i watch for Knglisli 
vessels. Knox's health was now greatly impaired by thf 
severity of his conhnement. and he was seized with a fever, 
during which his life was despaired of by all in the ship. I'.iit 
even in this state his fortitutle of mind remained unsubdued, 
and he couif irtcl his fell ow-prisiners with hopes of release. 
To their anxious desponding in(U>irics, natural to men in their 
situation, ' If he thought they would ever obtain tlieir liberty,' 
his uniform answer was, 'Crod will deliver us to his glor\-, 
even in this life.' While they lay on the coa-st t)ctwcen 
Dundee and St. .Xndrews, .Mr. afterwards Sir James Hairi\ir. 
who was conlined in the same ship, desired him to look at the 
VUL. I. 



same vessel along with Knox, from which he escaped 
in 1550, along with the rest, by the tacit permission 
of the French government. 

Balfour seems to have afterwards joinerl in the 
proceedings of the reformers, but only with courtier- 
like temperance, and without exhibiting much zeal 
in the Protestant cause. He was preferred to the 
ecclesiastical ai)pointment of official of Lothian, and 
afterwards became rector of Flisk, a parish in his 
native county. In 1563 he was appointed by (^)ueen 
Mary to be a lord of session, the court then i>eing 
cmnposed partly of churchmen and partly of laics. 
In 1564, when the commis.sary court was in.stitutcd 
in place of the ecclesiastical tribunal, which had been 
tlissolved at the Reformation, Balfour became one 
of the four c(mimissaries, with a salary of 400 mcrks, 
while the others had only 300. In Julv, 1565, the 
(jueen extended the further favour of admitting him 
into her privy-council. 

Balfour was one of those servants of the state who, 
being advanced rather on accouiU of merit than birth, 
used at all times to give great offence to the Scottish 
nobility. It seems to have never been su]i])osed by 
this haughty class, that there was the least necessity 
for talented or faithful service in the officials em- 
])Ioyecl by majesty; birth andyc'/^ziv';/;^ were the only 
cpialifications allowed by them to be of any value. 
Accordingly, it is not surprising to find that the 
same conspiracy which overthrew the "kinless" ad- 
venturer Rizzio, contemplated the destruction of 
Balfour. He was so fortunate, however, as to escape, 
and even derived some advantage from the event, 
being ])romoted to the office of clerk-register, in rocm 
of Mr. James Macgill, who was concerneel in the 
conspiracy. He was also about this time made a 
knight, and appointed to be one of the commis- 
sioners for revising, correcting, and publi.shing the 
ancient laws and statutes of the kingdom. 

In the beginning of the year 1567 .Sir James 
Balfour was ajipointed governf)r of Edinburgh Castle. 
In this important situation he naturally became an 
object of great solicitude to the confederate lords, 
who, in the ensuing May, commenced a successful 
rebellion against (^ueen Mary. It would ajijicar 
that Sir James was not now more loyal than man)- 
other jiersons who had experienced the favour of 
Mnry. He is said to have even been the means of 
throwing into the hands of the confederates that 
celebrated box of letters upon which they endea- 
voured to ground the proof of her guilt. There can 
be no doubt that he was at this time in the way of 
receiving high favours from the Earl of Murray, who 
was tlie chief man ojijiosed to the tlethn^incd (jueen. 
lie was, in .Sejitcmber, 1567, admitted by Murray .a 
lord of his privy-council, and maile commendator of 
the priory of Pittenweem; and in December, a bargain 
was accomplished, by which he agreed to accejH a 
pension of ^5C)0 and the presidency of the cnurt of 
session, in lieu of the clerk-registry, which Murray 
wished to be restored to his friend Macgill. .Sir 
James continued faithful to the jiarty which opposed 
(Jueen Man,- till the death of Murray, January. 
1569-70. when he was in some measure c^ni] elk J 
to revert to the queen's side, on accoinit of a charci.' 
preferreil against him by the succeeding reu'i.!,:. 



land and see if he knew it. Thuui,'h at that tin.e 
replied. " N'es, 1 know it well. f. r I see the ^t 
place where Ciod first opened my ir,'".ith in pu'i h. 
and I am fully persuaded, h 'u- ue;ik s-evcr I 
that I shall n.it depart ttn^ life till tl'..it niv i-ni;'.:t 
his godly name in tlie ^ame place.' 1 his ~*riki 
James repeated in the presence I'f many wiiin-- 
of years tx.-fore Knox returned t.i Sr. .tl,ii;d. .11; 
was very little pr-wjiect <^i his w^^rds bti:.^ VLrilie 
Kiw.v, ist edit. p. 5j. 



"l^v'J 
en thL 

/. :/;• , 
5 



C6 



SIR JAMES BALFOUR. 



Lennox, who taxed him with a share in tlie murder 
of Damley. For this accusation no proof was ever 
adduced, but even allowing Sir James to have been 
guilty, it will only add another to the list of great 
men concerned in the transaction, and show llie 
more clearly how neither learning, rank, official 
dignity, nor any other ennobling ciualification,' pre- 
vented a man in those days from staining his hands 
with blood. Balfour outlived Lennox, and was 
serviceable in bringing about the pacification between 
the king's and queen's party, under Morton, in 1573- 
He would appear to have been encouraged by Mor- 
ton in the task of revising the laws of the country, 
which he at length completed in a style allowed at 
that time to be most masterly. Morton afterwards 
thought proper to revive the charge brought by Len- 
nox against Sir James, who was consequently obliged 
to retire to France, where he lived for some years. 
He returned in 15S0, and revenged the persecution 
of Morton, by producing against him, on his trial, 
a deed to which he had acceded, in common with 
others of the Scottish nobility, alleging Bothwell's 
innocence of the king's murder, anil recommending 
him to the queen as a husband. .Sir James died be- 
fore the I4tli of January, 15S3-4. As a politician 
his time-serving character, and facility with which 
he veered from one party to the other, was pithily 
characterized by the saying, "He wagged as the 
bush wagged." Each change of the political wind 
could be discovered by the changes of Sir James. 

The Practicks of Scots Lan.', compiled by .Sir James 
Balfour of Pittendreich, president of the court of 
session, continued to be used and consulted in manu- 
script, both by students and practitioners, till nearly 
a century after his decease, when it was for the first 
time supplanted by the Ijistitiites of Lord Stair. 
Even after that event it was held as a curious re- 
pertory of the old practices of .Scottish law, besides 
fulfilling certain uses not answered by the work of 
Lord .Stair. It was therefore printed in 1754 by 
the Ruddimans, along with an accurate biograjihical 
preface by Walter Cioodal. The work was of con- 
siderable service to Dr. Jamieson in his Dictionary 
of the Scottish Laii^i^imgc. 

BALFOUR, Sir Jami.s, an eminent antiquar}', 
herald, and annalist, was l)(jrn about the close of the 
sixteenth century. He was the eldest son of a small 
Fife laird, Michael Balfour of Denmylne, who de- 
rived his descent from James, son of Sir John Balfour 
of Balgarvy, a cadet' of the ancient and honourable 
house of Balfour of Balfour in l'"ife. James Balfour, 
the ancestor of Sir Michael, had olitained the estate 
of Denmylne from James II., in the fourteenth year 
of his reign, which corresjwnds with 1450-I. 
Michael Balfour, the fatlierof Sir James, and als<j of 
Sir .Andrew, whose life has l)een already commemo- 
rated, was, in the words of Sir Rol/ert Siblxald, 
"equally distinguished for military bravery and civil 
prudence." He bore the honoural)le office of comp- 
troller (jf the Scottish household, in the reign (jf 
Charles I., and in 1630 was knigiited at Holyrood 
House by fjeorge. Viscount Du])])lin, clmncellor of 
.Scotland, under his majesty's s])ecial warrant. This 
eminent personage was, by Jean Durham, (laughter 
of James Durham of Bitarrow, the father of five 
sons, all of whom attained to distinction in ])ul)lic 
life, besides nine daughters, who ail funned lionour- 
able alliances except two, who died unmarried. I le 



' This branch w.is ennobled in 1607, in the yxrsnn of Mlrhn'l 
Halfour of B.ilg.irvy, wht), h.iving scrvcl King J.iiiics in 
•several embassies to the principal courts of Kiirope, was rrcalcil 
Lord Balfour of Burleigh. This peerage was attainted in ( on- 
sequcnce of the concern of its occupant in t!ie civil war of '715- 



lived to see three hundred of his own descendants, 
a number which his youngest son, Sir Andrew, lived 
to see doubled. 

.Sir Michael Balfour gave his eldest son an educa- 
tion suitable to the extended capacity which he dis- 
played in his earliest years. This education, of which 
the fmits are apparent in his taste and writings, was 
accompanied by a thorough initiation into the duties 
of religion, as then professed on a Presbyterian model. 
The genius of the future antiquary was first exhibited 
in a turn for poetry, which was a favourite study 
among the scholars of that period, even where there 
was no particular aptitude to excel in its composition, 
but for which Sir James Balfour appears to have hail 
a genuine taste. 

No specimens indeed of his poetry have survived, 
but the poetical temperament of Sir James, and the 
courtly grace which generally is, and ever ought to 
be, the accompaniment of that character, is shown 
in the following epistle to a lady, which we consider 
a very elegant specimen of the English prose of the 
age of Charles I., and, indeed, singularly so, when 
the native country of the writer is considered: — 

"To A Lady, -FOR a Friend, 
"Madam, — You must appardone me if, after the 
remembring of my best love to you, I should rander 
you hartly thanks for your affectione, since thankes 
are the best knowen blossomes of the hartes strongest 
desyres. I never, for my pairt, doubtit of your affec- 
tione, bot persuadit myselve that so good a creature 
could never prove unconstant; and altho the fairest 
dayes may have some stormy overshadowings, yet 
I persuade myselve that these proceids not from hea- 
venly thinges, bot from vapors arising from below, 
and though they for a tyme conte[ract] the sun's 
heat, yet make they that heat in the end to be more 
powerfull. I hope your friends sail have all the con- 
tentment that layes in my power to gif them: And, 
since Malice ilselve can not judge of you bot noblie, 
1 wisch that tyme make your affectione als constant, 
as my harte sail ever prove, and remaine loyall; and 
lest I seime to weirey you more than myselve, again 
I must beg pardone for all my oversights (if you think 
of aney) wich will be a rare jierfectione of goodness 
in you to forgive freely, and love constantly him 
quhosse greatest happines under heaven is always to 
leive and die 

"Your trcwly affcctional servant." 

.Sir James seems to have spent some of the years 
subsequent to 1626 in foreign countries, where he is 
said to have improved himself much by observing 
the manners of nations more polished than his own, 
anil l)y forming the acquaintance of eminerit litei'ary 
men. At the close of his continental travels he 
spent some time in London, and obtained the IVientl- 
ship of the distinguished antiijuary Sir Robert Cot- 
ton, and also of .Sir William Segar, garter king-at- 
arms. He had now turned his attention to the 
study of heraldry, and the friendship of these inen 
was of material service in the com])letion of what 
might be called his jirofessional education. He also 
contracted a literary acf|iiaintance with Roger Dods- 
worth and .Sir William Dugdale, to whom he com- 
municated several charters and other pieces of in- 
formation regarding Scottish ecclesiastical antiquities, 
which they attached to their Afoiuut.con yhi^licdinon, 
under the title Ca-nobia Scotica. 

Besides these antiquarian friends, Balfour secured 
several others of a more courtly com])lexion, who 
W(.'re natives of his own country. He enjoyed the 
friendship of .Sir Robert Aytoun, the poetical cour- 
tier, with whom he afterwards Ijecame distantly con- 
nected bv marriage. He was also on the must 



SIR JAMES BALFOUR. 



67 



familiar terms witli another poetical attendant on the 
elegant court of Charles I. — the Earl of Stirling. 
His chief patron, however, was George, Viscount 
Dupplin, ' who held the high and almost vice-regal 
office of chancellor of Scotland. By the recom- 
mendation of this nobleman, aided by his own ex- 
cellent qualifications, he was created by Charles I. 
lord-lyon king-at-arms, a dignified legal office in 
Scotland, in which resides the management of all 
matters connected with armorial honours, as also all 
public ceremonials. Sir Jerome Lyndsay having 
previously resigned the office, Balfour was crowned 
and installed at Ilolyrood Mouse, June 15, 1630, 
having in the preceding month been invested with 
the necessary honour of knighthood by the king. 
On this occasion Lord Dupplin officiated as royal 
commissioner. 

Sir James Balfour now settled in Scotland, in the 
enjoyment of his office. On the 21st of October he 
was married to Anna Aiton, daughter of Sir John 
Aiton of that ilk, and in January, 1631, he obtained, 
in favour of himself and his spouse, a grant of the 
lands and barony of Kinnaird in Fife. In De- 
cember, 1633, he was created a baronet by Charles 
I., probably in consequence of the able manner in 
which he marshalled the processions and managed 
the other ceremonials of the royal visit that year. 
At this period of peace and prosperity a number of 
learned and ingenious men were beginning to exert 
themselves in Scotland. It was a peaceful interval 
between the desolating civil wars of the minority of 
King James and the equally unhappy contest w'hich 
was soon after incited by religious and political dis- 
sensions. Like soldiers enjoying themselves during 
a truce, the people were beginning to seek for and 
cultivate various sources of amusement in the more 
elegant arts. This was the era of Jamieson the 
painter — of Drummond the poet — of the geographer 
Pont — and the historians Spottiswood, Calderwood, 
Johnston, and Hume." Sir James Balfour, inspired 
with the common spirit of these men, commenced 
the writing of historj' with as much zeal as could be 
expected in an age when, the printing of a written 
work being a comparatively rare occurrence, litera- 
ture might be said to want the greater part of its 
temptations. 

Sir James, as already mentioned, had been bred 
a strict Presbyterian. In this profession he con- 
tinued to the last, notwithstanding that, in politics, 
he was an equally firm royalist. In a letter to 
a young nobleman (Correspondence, Advocates' Li- 
brary) he is found advising a perusal of "Calvine, 
Beza, Parens, and \V]iittaker,"as "orthodox writers." 



' AftenvarJs created Karl of Kinnoul, on the occasion of 
the coronation of King Charles at Edinburgh in 1633. Sir 
James Half jur relates the following curious anecdote of liis 
lordship. 'I'he king, in 1626, had commanded, by a letter to 
his privy council, that the Archbishop of St. Andrews should 
Iiave precedence of the chancellor. To this his lordship would 
never submit. "I remember," says Sir James, "that K. 
Charles sent mc to the lord-chancellor on the day of his 
coronation, in the morning, to show him that it was his will 
and pleasure, hot onlie for that day, that he wold ceed and 
give way to the archbishop; but he returned by me to his 
majestie a wcry bniskc answer, which wa.s, that he was ready 
in all humility to lay his office doune at his majestie's feet; 
hot since it was his royal will he should enjoy it with the 
knowen privile^ies of the same, never a priest in Scotland 
should sett a f .ot Iiefore him, so long as his blood w.as bote. 
Quhcn I had related his answer to the kinge, he said, ' Weel, 
l.yone, letts goc to bu>iness: I will not medle farther with 
that olde cankered gootish man. at quhose hand ther is no- 
thing to be g.ained bot soiire words.'" What makes this 
anecdote the more expressively illustrative of the rancour with 
which the secular offirers and nobility lx;held the newly dl.,;- 
nificd clergy is, that the lord-chancellor had just on the pre- 
ceding afternoon been raised to the rank of Karl of Kinnoul. 

^ l>.avid Hume of Godacruft, autlior of the //istoy 0/ t/:c 



When the introduction of the liturgy imposed by 
Charles I. roused Scotland from one end to the 
other in a fit of righteous indignation. Sir James 
Balfour, notwithstanding his connection with the 
government, joined cordially with his countr)mfcn, 
and wrote an account of the tumult of the 23d of 
July, under the burlesque title of Stoueyfu-lJ J Jay. 

Jiut, though indignant, in common with all pe(Ji)le 
of his own persuasion, at the religious iimovations 
attempted by the government. Sir James appears to 
have very soon adopted tlifferent feelings. Like 
many moderate persons who had equally condemned 
the ill-advised conduct of the king, he after%vards 
began to fear that the opposition would produce 
greater mischiefs than the evil which w^as opposed. 

It was probably in consequence of this feeling that 
he retired to the royal hunting-palace of Falkland, 
where, and at his seat of Kinnaird, he devoted him- 
self to those studies by which the present may be 
forgotten in the past. His annals, however, show 
that he still occasionally appeared in public affairs in 
his capacity of lord-lyon. It is also clear that his 
political sentiments mu.st have been of no obtrusive 
character, as he continued in his office during the 
whole term of the civil war, and was only at last 
deprived of it by Cromwell. During his rural re- 
tirement at Falkland and Kinnaird, he collected 
many manuscripts relative to heraldrj', and wrote 
many others in his own language, of which some are 
preserved in the Advocates' Librarv', while others 
were either lost at the capture of Perth (1651), to 
which town he had conveyed them for safety, or 
have since been dispersed. Persevering with par- 
ticular diligence in illustrating the History of Scot- 
land, he had recourse to the ancient charters and 
diplomas of the kingdom, the archives of monasteries, 
and registers of cathedral churches, and in his library 
was a great number of chronicles of monasteries, 
both originals and the abridgments; but it is to be 
deeply regretted that many of these valuable manu- 
scripts fell into the hands of children, or perished in 
the flames during the civil w-ars. A few only were 
opportunely rescued from destruction by those wliu 
were acquainted with their value. The style of 
these monastic chronicles was indeed nide and 
barbarous- but they were remarkable for the in- 
dustrv-, judgment, and fidelity to truth, with which 
they were compiled. For some time after the erec- 
tion of monasteries in this kingdom, these writers 
were almost the only, and certainly the most re- 
spectable, observers in literature, as scarcely any 
other persons preserved in writing the memory of 
the important occurrences of the limes. In the.se 
registers and chronicles were to be found an accurate 
record of transactions with foreign powers, whether 
in forming alliances, contracting marriagcb of st.itc. 
or regidating commerce ; letters and bulls of the 
holy see; answers, edicts, and statutes of kings; 
church rescripts; provincial constitutions; acts ci 
parliament; battles; deaths of eminent per>or.>: 
epitaphs and inscriptions; and sometimes tlie natural 
appearances of the seasons; the prevalent di.-easc-; 
miracles an^l prodigies; the heresies that spmng wy. 
with an account of the authors and tb.eir ]rL;iiish- 
ments. In short, they conimiUed to writing cvcrx- 
important occurrence in church and state, tl;at any 
question arising in after-ages niiglu be .^ctt'.cc! li\" 
their authority, and the unanimous cr'ntiiiiiawiai 01 
their faithful and accurate chronicles. In ci l'ect;ng 
and preserving tliese manuscripts, Pallour thei(.-l<ir,; 
raised a monument to his nienitiry wh;ch tiic latc-t 
posterity must revere. For he did sd f:"m a cui- 
viction that ihe.-e old and approve: 1 airJv 'r.-. were tl;e 
onlv miides to the k;:o\vIe;ii:e of fact^. a.> weii a.s 



68 



SIR JAMES BALFOUR ROBERT BALFOUR. 



to correct evidence and reasoning on the remote 
history of Scotland; and he considered them not 
only of signal use to himself, but a valuable treasure 
to the literature of the country. He therefore per- 
severed throughout life in collecting such manuscripts, 
without regard to either trouble or expense. The 
catalogue wliich he left is still extant,* although 
many, as already mentioned, were lost by the depre- 
dations of the English and other causes. He formed 
with great industry, and at a considerable expense, 
a library of the most valuable books on every 
subject, particularly in the branches of Scottish 
history, antiquities, and heraldry. From these he 
extracted every assistance they coukl afford in the 
pursuit of his inquiries, and for further aid he estab- 
lislied a correspondence with the most respectal)le 
living historians, .such as Robert Maule, Henry 
^Laule, David Buchanan, Gordon of Straloch, and 
Drummond of Hawthornden, all of whom he regarded 
through life with the warmest esteem and with the 
greatest respect for their talents and accomplish- 
ments. 

He endeavoured to elucidate our history (which 
was then involved in confusion) from tlie examina- 
tion of ancient medals, coins, rings, bracelets, and 
other relics of antiquity, of which he formed a 
separate collection as an appendage to his library. 
Observing also from historians that the Romans 
had long been settled in Scotland, and had made 
desperate attempts to expel our ancestors, both 
Scots and Picts, he collected the inscriptions which 
they had left on certain stone buildings, and tran- 
scribed them among his notes. In compiling the 
work to which he gave the title of Annals, our 
author was more anxious to supply the deficiencies 
of other historians, and to bring to light obscure 
records, than to exhibit a continued and regular 
history of Scotland. He therefore carefully ex- 
tracted from old manuscripts, the names, dignities, 
and offices of distinguished public characters, the 
dates of remarkable transactions, and every other 
circumstance of importance, and arranged them in 
separate paragraphs. He was actuated by a generous 
disposition to rescue from oblivion and the grave 
the memory of illustrious men; for which purpose 
he visited all the catliedrals and the principal parish 
churches of the kingdom, and examined their sepul- 
chres and other monuments, from wliich he copied 
the epitaphs and inscriptions, carefully preserving 
them in a volume. He deeply interested himself in 
some laudable attempts to improve the geography 
of .Scotland. .Sir Janies made also a survey of Fife, 
his native county, examining particularly ancient 
monuments, and the genealogies of the principal 
families. He afterwards compiled a description of 
the whole kingdom, of wliich tiie manuscript was so 
useful to Bleau, that he dedicated to our author the 
map of Lome in his Tlu-atnun Scoliu, and em- 
bellished it witli the arms of IJalfour. 

Zealous in the improvement and knowledge of 
heraldr)-, he carefully reviewed, not only the public 
acts and diplomas (jf nobility, but the contents of 
ancient edifices, temples, and palaces, shields and 
sepulchral monuments. When it had become proper, 
from his years, to allow the I'rincc of Wales a 
separate establishment, an infjuiry was ordered con- 
cerning the revenues of the hereditary princes, as 
stewards or lords-marshal of Scotland, in which 
Balfour appears to have taken ]iart, as we fuid 
among his manuscripts the following: "The true 
present state of the principality of Scotland, with 
the means how the same may be most conveniently 



^ Mcmoria Bal/ouriana, p. \<)-zZ- 



increased and augmented; with which is joined ane 
survey, and brief notes from the public registers of 
the kingdoms, of certain infeftmentsand confirmations 
given to princes of Scotland; and by them to their 
vassals of diverse baronies and lands of the princi- 
palitie, since the fifteenth year of the reign of 
Robert HI." 

In the history of this country he displayed his 
uncommon industry in his numerous collection of 
manuscripts, in the great assemblage of historical 
works in his own library, and in his careful inspec- 
tion of the various manuscripts dispersed over the 
kingdom, from which he generally extracted the 
substance, if he did not wholly transcribe them, 
forming a general index to such as were useful in 
.Scottish history. Fie m^de several abridgments of 
the registers of Scone, Cambuskenneth, and others, 
and from the works of Major, Boece, Leslie, and 
Buchanan, which, in proper order, formed parts of 
his chronological works, along with relations of im- 
portant transactions throughout the world. Besides 
this he wrote a remarkably concise yet comprehen- 
sive IIisio>y of the Alngs of Scotland, from Fergus I. 
to Charles I. He also intended to have enlarged 
the annals of the Scottish Kings from James I. to 
the beginning of Charles II., of which he had finished 
the two first James's on a more diffuse and extensive 
scale. In other works, he wrote memoirs of James 
III. IV. v., of Queen Mary, and of James VI., and 
the transactions of Charles I., brought down to his 
death. In natural history, he wrote an alphabetical 
list of gems, with descriptions, their names and 
qualities, and the places where they are produced. 
Another work upon the same subject, written in 
Latin, exhibited, from various authors, an account 
of ingenious inventions or frauds practised in 
counterfeiting and imitating precious stones. 

.Sir James concluded an industrious, and, it would 
appear, a most blameless life, in February, 1657, 
when he must have been about sixty years of age. 
He had been four times married: 1st, to Anna Alton, 
by whom he had three sons and six daughters, and 
who died August 26th, 1644; 2d, to Jean Durham, 
daughter of the laird of Pitarrow, his own cousin, 
who died without issue only eleven months subse- 
quent to the date of his first wife's death; 3d, to 
Margaret Arnot, only daughter of Sir Janies Arnot 
of P'ernie, by whom he had three sons and three 
daughters; 4th, to Janet Auchinleck, daughter of 
Sir William Auchinleck of Balinanno, by whom he 
had two daughters. Yet his family is now extinct 
in the male line. The ylnnals and Short J\issages 
of State, above alluded to, were, after nearly two 
centuries of manuscript obscurity, published in 1824, 
in 4 volumes 8vo, by Mr. Janies Ilaig of tlie 
Advocates' Library. 

BALFOUR, RoRERT, a distinguished philosopher 
of the seventeenth century, was jirincipal of (niyenne 
College, Bordeaux, anil is mentioned byMorhofas 
a celebrated commentator on Aristotle. According 
to I)ein])ster, he was "the phoenix of his age; a 
philosopher ]irofoundly skilled in the Greek and 
Latin languages; a mathematician worthy of being 
compared with the ancients: and to those qualifica- 
tions he joined a wonderfiil suavity of manners, and 
the utmost warmth of affection towards his country- 
men." This eminent personage aiipears to have 
been one of that numerous class of .Scotsmen, who, 
having gained all their honours in climes more 
genial to science than Scotland was a few centuries 
ago, are to this day belter known abroad than among 
their own countrymen. According to the fantastic 
Urquhart, who wrote in the reign of Charles L, 



DR. ROBERT BALFOUR, 



69 



"Most of the Scottish nation, never having astricted 
themselves so much to the proprieties of words as to 
the i<nowledj,'e o( things, where there was one pre- 
ceptor of lan;,'uages amongst them, there were above 
forty professors of philosopliy: nay, to so high a pitch 
did the glory of the Scottish nation attain over all 
the parts of France, and for so long a time continue 
in that obtained height, by virtue of an ascendant the 
I'rench conceived the Scots to have above all nations, 
in matter of tl.--ir subtlety in philosophical discepta- 
tions, that there hath not been, till of late, for these 
sjveral ages together, any lord, gentleman, or other, 
in all that country, who being desirous to have his 
son instructed in the principles of philosophy, would 
intrust him to the discipline of any other than a 
Scottish master; of whom they were no less proud 
than Philip was of Aristotle, or Tullius of Cratippus. 
And if it occurred (as very often it did) that a pre- 
tender to a place in any French university, having, 
in his tenderer years, been subfendary to some other 
kind of schooling, should enter in competition with 
another aiming at the same charge and dignity, whose 
learning flowed from a Caledonian source, commonly 
the first was rejected and the other preferred." It 
nevertheless appears that Robert Balfour prosecuted 
the study of philology, as well as that of philosophy, 
with considerable success. His edition of Cleomedes, 
published at Bordeaux, in 1605, ^' Latiiu versa, ct per- 
pduo coiniiiciitario illitstrata" is spoken of in the 
highest terms of praise by the erudite Barthius. 
Other works l)y Balfour are, Gdasii Cyziccni Coin- 
vieiitariiis Actorum Nkceiii Coucilii, Roberto Balforeo 
inter prete, 1 604, folio; Commeittarius K. Balforei in 
Or^anum lAi^icttm Aristotelis, 1616, 4to; and R. 
lull for ei Scoti Coinntentariorum in lib. Arist. de 
JViilosophia, tomus secundus, 1620, 4to. 

BALFOUR, Dr. Robert. — This distinguished 
minister of the Church of Scotland was born in 
Edinburgh, in April, 1740. He was early trained 
by his pious parents to the knowledge and practice 
of Christianity. He received his education at Edin- 
burgh, and when a mere youth he became a member 
of a society which met for religious conversation and 
jirayer. The devotional tendency of his mind, thus 
early acquiretl, was a prominent feature of his charac- 
ter through life. Of his college career no record has 
been preserved. In 1774 he was ordained to the 
ministry of the gospel in the small rural charge of 
l.ecropt, near Stirling. Here he laboured with 
nuich acceptance for five years, not inattentive mean- 
while to his personal improvement, and in his pulpit 
duties giving no doubtful presages of the jirofessional 
distinction and influence to which he was destined 
to rise. In June, 1779, he was translated to the 
Outer High Church of Glasgow, then vacant by the 
removal of Mr. Randal (afterwards Dr. Davidson) 
lo Edinburgh. 

At the time of Dr. Balfour's settlement in Glasgow 
evangelical religion was at a low ebb in the Estab- 
lished Church throughout Scotland, and Moderatism 
was in the ascendant. Dr. Balfour, from the outset 
of his ministry, warmly espoused the evangelical 
cause, wliich he recommended alike by the power 
of his preaching and by the active benevolence and 
consistency of his life. His ministry in Glasgow 
gave a fresh impulse to the revival and diffusion of 
])ure and undefiled religion in the west of Scotland. 
Ciiristian missions were then in their infancy, and in 
Sc itland met with much opposition from the domi- 
nant party in the Est.ii)lished Church. Dr. Balfour 
was one of the founders (if the tdasgow Missionarv 
Society, which was establislicil in 1796. a few months 
after tlie institution of the London Missionary- 



Society. He preached a striking sermon at the 
commencement of the society, which was one of 
the few discourses he ventured on publishing; and 
one of his last public acts, twenty-two years after- 
wards, was to sign a circular letter as its' president. 
The following passage from the discourse just men- 
tioned bears testimony to the earnest interest he felt 
in the missionary cause, and affords an example of 
a style of appeal, which, with the aid of his me- 
lodious voice, keen eye, and graceful and fervid 
elocution, must have proved singularly animating. 
After describing the true missionary spirit and char- 
acter, he proceeded — "We invite and press all of 
this description to come forward full of the Holv 
Ghost and of faith. We cannot, we will not tempt 
you with worldly prospects — if you are right-hearted 
men according to your profession, you will not seek 
great things for yourselves — you must not think of 
an easy life — you must labour hard — you must en- 
counter difTiculties, opposition, and dangers; for 
these, however, you are not unprovided. 
We will follow you with our prayers, and with 
every blessing in our power to bestow. But what 
is of infinitely greater moment and advantage to you 
is, that the Lord Jesus, whose religion you are to 
teach, will be with you, and that he is greater than 
all who can be against you. Depending then on 
him alone for your own salvation, and for the salva- 
tion of the heathen; seeking not your own jileasure, 
profit, or honour, but that he may be glorified in 
and by you, and by sinners converted from the error 
of their way, be not afraid — be strong and of good 
courage. To all who thus devote themselves to his 
service we most heartily bid God speed. Fly, ye 
angels of grace, from pole to pole, and from the 
rivers to the ends of the earth, bearing to all men 
the glad tidings of the everlasting gos]:iel; stop not 
in this bold flight of philanthropy, till you convey 
to the simple sons of the isles the knowledge of the 
true God and eternal life — till you arrest the wander- 
ings of the roving savage with the wonders of re- 
deeming grace — till you dart the beams of celestial 
light and love into the dark habitations of ignorance 
and cruelty — till you convert the barbarous cannibal 
to humanity, to Christian gentleness and goodness. 
Hasten to the shores of long-injured Africa, not to 
seize and sell the bodies of men, but to save their 
perishing souls. Follow the miserable captives to 
their several sad destinations of slaver.-, with the 
inviting proclamation of spiritual liberty, while you 
inculcate the strictest duly to their masters. Speed 
your way to India, to repay her gold with the un- 
searchable riches of Christ. Meet all the high pre- 
tensions of the Brahmin religion and literature, and 
all their fatal delusions and cruel impositions, with 
the overpowering evidence of the Christian as a 
divine revelation — with the fidl luminous display of 
evangelical truth and holiness. Cease not. till you 
see tlie whole earth filled with the knowledge of the 
Lord, as the waters cover the channel of the sea.'" 

Dr. Balfour was an eloquent man, Init his w.is nijt 
an elocjuence which sought its reward in jM^jnilar 
applause. It flowed spontaneously from a licart 
deeply imbued with love to the Saviour ami t^ the 
souls of men. Earnest preaching matte e.irnc-t 
listening, and whilst his rL-jnitation in the ]'ul|':t 
continued luiimjiaired to the close of h'.s l;tf. tiie 
fruits of his ministry were abundant. nn'I 1;> Jn- 
lluence extended far lieyond tlie limits of !:i- "wn 
congregation. His jireaching was clear ar.'i .'m- 
prehensive; textual, luminous. and ]i. iii-.Ied ; 1. \:;;li-;ing 
a remarkable intimacy with the varieties "1 t_ 1 
ex]-)erience, and a ]M-ofounil kiioule'l;^e '-t 
nature; animated with a warm and ;.ersuasi% e e 



r>!ian 
nunan 



70 



ROBERT BALFOUR 



EDWARD BALIOL. 



ness; faithful and close in applying tlie tnith; anil 
exhibiting an exuberant flow of appropriate and 
powerful expression. He was not in the habit of 
■writing his discourses at full length, but his prepara- 
tions for the pulpit were never relaxed. Although 
not displaying the plodding habits of the scholar, he 
kept up his knowledge of general literature, and 
cultivated an acquaintance with tlie works of tlie 
best autliors in his own profession. His morning 
hours were consecrated to study and devotion. He 
possessed the power of readily commanding his 
thoughts in the intervals of daily occupation, and 
was in the habit, to use his own expression, of 
"carrying about" with him the sulijects on which he 
intended to preach. His stores of thought and 
illustration were ample and exul^erant, and, being 
giftetl with a ready utterance, he could on every 
occasion express himself with ease and propriety. 
Without the appearance of much labour, therefore, 
he was able to appear in the pulpit with a felicity 
and success to which men of inferior minds find it 
impossible to attain after the most laborious efforts. 
He seldom engaged in controversy, and did not 
often obtmde himself upon the notice of church 
courts, for tlie business of which, however, he showed 
no want of aptitude. His modesty and humility 
prevented him from issuing more than a few of his 
more public and elaborate jirodiictions through the 
press. An anecdote is related of him, which illus- 
trates his disinclination to pulilish, as well as the 
readiness with wliich lie couitl draw in an emergency 
upon the resources of his richly-stored mind. On 
one occasion, after having preached with much 
acceptance on the divinity of Clirist, he was waited 
upon by a young man, who, on his own part and 
that of two companions, preferred an urgent request 
that he would print his discourse, assigning as a 
reason that it had completely relieved their minds of 
doubts which they had been led to entertain on this 
momentous doctrine, and that it was fitted to have 
the same effect upon the minds of others similarly 
situated. On the doctor expressing his aversion to 
appear in print, his visitor entreated the favour of a 
perusal of the manuscript. In this he was equally 
unsuccessful; for it then appeared that the doctor, on 
proceeding to the church, had found himself — from 
some unwonted and inexj^licable cause — utterly in- 
capable of recalling the train of tliought which had 
occu]«ed his mind in preparing for the pulpit; and 
at the last moment he was under the necessity of 
choosing a new text, from which he delivered the 
unpremeditated discourse that had produced such a 
salutar\' impression upon the minds of his three 
youthful hearers. 

His attachment to his congregation was evinced 
on the occasion of his receiving an offer to be pre- 
sented to Lady Olenorchy's cliajiel in Edinburgh, 
which he declined, although, in a worldly point of 
view, it possessed considerable advantages over liis 
charge in Olasgow. He was alike frank, friendlv, 
and accessible to all classes of his peo])le, and had 
always a kind word for the poor. He showed great 
tact in dealing with the humbler members of his 
flock, who sometimes came to the good man with 
unreasonable complaints. When the old-fashioned 
practice of the precentor reading line by line of the 
psalm was discf)ntinued, an ancient dame jiresentcd 
herself to the minister, to express her concern at the 
innovation, at the same time gently reproaching him 
for departing from a good old custom of our ])ious 
forefathers — a custom, be it remembered, which had 
been introduced at a time when few persons in a 
congregation were able to read. "Oh, Janet," re- 
plied the doctor, in a tone of kindly remonstrance, 



"I read the psalm, and you sing it; what's the use 
of coming over it a third time?" "Ou, sir," was the 
ready answer, "I juist like to gust my gab wi't!" 
In process of time "repeating tunes" were intro- 
duced in the precentor's desk, and Janet hastened 
forthwith to the minister, to lodge her complaint 
against the profane innovation. "What's the 
matter wi' ye now?" inquired the doctor, as he 
welcomed the worthy old dame into his presence. 
"The sang tunes, wi' their o'ercomes brocht into 
the worship of the sanctuary," quoth she; "it's juist 
usin' vain repetitions, as the heathens do." "Oh 
dear no, Janet," slyly interposed the doctor, "we 
juist like to gust our gabs wi't !" 

Dr. Balfour rnarried, in November, 1774, Isabella 
.Stark, daughter of Mr. Stark, collector of excise at 
Kirkcaldy. She died in October, 1 781. In June, 
1787, he married Catherine M 'Gilchrist, daughter 
of Mr. Archibald M 'Gilchrist, town-clerk of the 
city of Glasgow. She died in May, 1817. These 
were not the only instances of domestic bereavement 
which he experienced in the course of his life. He 
preached on the day after the celebration of the 
Lord's supper at Dumbarton, in July, 1786, with 
an earnestness and solemnity more fervid and im- 
pressive than ordinary, as if his mind were under a 
powerful impulse. On his way home he received 
information of the death of a beloved and only son, 
in circumstances fitted deeply to wound his heart. 
Henry, a fine spirited boy, had been left by his 
father, then a widower, during an absence of some 
days, under the charge of Air. and Mrs. Denniston 
of West Thorn, and was accidently drowned in the 
Clyde. After recovering from the first paroxysm of 
grief occasioned by the heart-rending intelligence. 
Dr. Balfour hastened to tender his sympathy to his 
deeply afflicted friends, whose kindness had been 
permitted to prove the innocent cause of involving 
him and his family in this calamity. This he did, 
in the first instance, in a letter of touching pathos 
and beauty, which afterwards found its way to the 
public, and was embodied in a little volume of Letters 
addressed to Christians in Affliction, published in 
181 7. The death of his son Archibald took jjlace 
many years previously, on the day when he preached 
the sermon by appointment of the Glasgow Mission- 
ary Society. His own death was sudden. On the 
I3tli of October, 1818, Dr. Balfour appeared to be 
in his usual health and spirits. In the course of the 
day he became unwell while walking out with a 
friend, and made an effort to return home. But his 
illness increasing, he was assisted into a friend's 
house in George Street, from which it was deemed 
imprudent to attempt to remove him. The symp- 
toms were found to be those of apoplexy. He con- 
tinued in a state of insensibility till the evening of 
the next day, the 14th, when he expired. He died 
in the seventy-first year of his age and forty-fifth year 
of his ministry. 

BALIOL, F.OWARI). King John Baliol had two 
sons, Edward and Henry. The former seems en- 
titled to some notice in this work, on account of his 
vigorous, though eventually unsuccessful, attempt to 
regain the crown lost by his father. When King John 
entered into the treaty with the King of France, in 
1295, it was stijndated in the first article that his son 
Edward should marry the daughter of Charles of 
Valois, niece to the French monarch, receiving with 
her 25,000 livres de Toumois current money, and 
assigning to her, as a dowr}', ^^1500 sterling of 
yearly rent, of which ;^looo should be paid out of 
King John's lands of J-ialii^l, Damjiier, Helicourt, 
and Horne, in Frr.nce, and ;^5oo out of those of 



EDWARD BALIOL. 



71 



Lanark, Cadzow, Cunningham,* Haddington, and the 
castle of Dundee, in Scotland. This young prince 
accompanied his father in his captivity in the Tower, 
and was subsequently carried with him to France. 
.\fter the death of John Baliol, Edward quietly suc- 
ceeded to. the French family estates, upon which he 
lived unnoticed till 1 324, when Edward II. com- 
manded that he should be brought over to England, 
apjiarently for the purpose of being held up as a rival 
to Robert Bnice. Whether he now visited England 
or not is uncertain; but it would rather appear that 
he did not, as in 1326 he was invited by Edward 
III. for the same purpose. At this time the English 
monarch was endeavouring to secure a peace with 
the King of Scots, but at the same time held him- 
self prepared for war by mustering his barons at 
Newcastle. Me seems to have thought that a threat 
of taking Baliol under his patronage was apt to 
quicken thedesiresof the Scots for anaccommodation. 
Nevertheless, in the summer of this year, the Scots 
made a bold and successful incursion into England, 
under Randolph and Douglas, and King Edward 
was obliged, April, 1328, to consent to the treaty of 
Northampton, which acknowledged at once the in- 
dependency of the Scottish crown, and the right of 
Robert Bruce to wear it. No more is heard of 
Edward Baliol till after the death of Bruce, when he 
was tempted by the apparent weakness of Scotland 
under the minority of David II. to attempt the 
recovery of his birthright. Two English barons, 
Henry de Beaumont and Thomas Lord Wake, 
claimed certain estates in Scotland, which had been 
declared their property l)y the treaty of Northamp- 
ton; Randolph, the Scottish regent, distrusting the 
sincerity of the English in regartl to other articles of 
this treaty, refused to restore those estates; and the 
two barons accordingly joined with Baliol in his 
design. That the English king might not be sup- 
posed accessory to so gross a breach of the treaty, he 
issued a jiroclamation against their expedition; but 
they easily contrived to ship 400 men-at-arms and 
3000 infantry at Holderness, all of whom were safely 
landed on the coast of Fife, July 31, 1332. Only 
eleven days before this event, the Scottish people had 
been bereft of their brave regent, Randolph, Earl of 
Moray, who was almost the last of those worthies by 
whom the kingdom of Bruce had been won and main- 
tained. The regency fell into the hands of Donald, 
Earl of Mar, in every respect a feebler man. Baliol, 
having beat back some forces which opposed his land- 
ing, moved forward to Forteviot, near Perth, where 
the Earl of Mar appeared with an army to dispute 
his farther progress. As the Scottish forces were 
much superior in number and position to the English, 
Baliol found himself in a situation of great jeopardy, 
and would willingly have retreated to his shijw, had 
that been possible. Finding, however, no other re- 
source than to fight, he led his forces at midnight across 
the Erne, surprised the Scottish camp in a state of 
the most disgraceful negligence, and put the whole to 
the rout. This .action, fought on the 12th of Au- 
gust, was called the battle of Dupplin. The con- 
(jueror entered Perth, and for some time found no 
resistance to his assumed authority. On the 24th 
of Septeinl)er he was solemnly crowned at .Scone. 
The friends of the line of Bruce, though unable to 
offer a formal opi)osition, appointed .Vndrew Morav 
o( Bothwell to be regent in the room of the Earl of 



is known to h.ive po<;sc-iscd in Cunning- 
Ianils:--I.arss. N'.xldcsdale. Scnith.inn.in. 



1 "John IU\1 

him the foil iwii.^ ^ .. . ^,v....v.. .„.,.. ,,.,.,. 

I'nlry. Hiffin, Ciini^hcuch, Drcshom, the frrent b.ironv of 
Kihimrnock, together with I! omlinton and Hart>haw; extend- 
ing in all to .about £Qi}>xi Scots of valued rent, or alxmt ^ijjCxjo 
real rent at present. "— A" t'/v/i^LV/V .lyrsh:>t' /■miiii'u-j. 



Mar, who had fallen at Dupplin. At Roxburgh, on 
the 23d of November, Baliol solemnly acknowledge*! 
Edward of England for his lu\^e lord, and surrendered 
to him the town and castle of Berwick, "on account 
of the great honour and emoluments which he had 
procured through the good-will of the English king, 
and the powerful and acceptable aid contributed by 
his people." The two princes also engaged on this 
occasion to aid each other in all their respective 
wars. Many of the Scottish chiefs now submitted 
to Baliol, and it does not ajipear improbable that he 
might have altogether retrieved a kingdom which 
was certainly his by the laws of hereditary succes- 
sion. But on the 15th of December, the adherents 
of the opposite dynasty suq)rised him in his turn at 
Annan, overpowered his h(jst, and having slain his 
brother Henry, and many other distinguished men, 
obliged him to flee, almost naked, and with hardly 
a single attendant, to England. His subsequent 
efforts, though not so easily counteracted, were of 
the same desultory character. He returned into 
.Scotland in March, and lay for some time at Rox- 
burgh with a small force. In May, 1333, he joined 
his forces with King Edward, and reduced the town 
of Berwick. The Scottish regent being overthrown 
at Halidon Hill, July 19, for a time all resistance to 
the claims of Baliol ceased. In a parliament held 
at Edinburgh in February, he ratified the former 
treaty with King Edward, and soon after surrendered 
to that monarch the whole of the counties on the 
frontier, together with the province of Lothian, as 
part of the kingdom of England. His power, how- 
ever, was solely supported by foreign influence, and, 
upon the rise of a few of the hostile Scottish barons, 
in November, 1334, he again fled to England. In 
July, 1335, Edward HI. enabled him to return under 
the protection of an army. But, notwithstanding 
the personal presence and exertions of no less a 
warrior than the victor of Cressy, the Scots never 
could altogether be brought under the sway of this 
vassal king. For two or three years Ed\\ard Baliol 
held a nominal sway at Perth, while the greater ])art 
of the country was in a state of rebellion against 
him. The regent Andrew Moray, dying in July, 
1338, w-as succeeded by Robert Stewart, the grand- 
son of Bruce and nephew of David IL, who having 
threatened to besiege Baliol in Perth, obliged him 
to retreat once more to England. The greater part 
of the countn,- speedily fell under the dominion of 
the regent, nor was Edward HI. now able to re- 
trieve it, being fully engaged in his French wars. 
The Scots having made an incursion, in 1344, into 
England, Baliol, with the forces of the northern 
counties, was appointed to oppose them. Two 
years after this period, when the fatal battle of Dur- 
ham and the ca])ture of David II. had again reduced 
the strength of Scotland, Baliol raised an insurrec- 
tion in Galloway, where his family .connections gave 
him great intluence, and speedily penetrated t<> tl.e 
central parts of the kingdom. He gained, liowevcr, 
no ]iermanent footing. For some years alter tl;;-- 
period .Scotland maintained a noble struggle iiii'icr 
its regent Robert Stewart, against lioth the j rctc:-,- 
sions of this adventurer and the jiower <■{ tlic K;r.g 
of England, till at length, in 1355- <''. w^aiicil (a;i 
with an unavailing contest, and feeling tlie ;t, [ n ach 
of old age. Baliol resigned all his claims ww- tl'.e 
hands of'Edward III. for the considerat:"ii ■t" 5CC0 
merks. and a yearly pension of /2i.<xd. AruT i!i:s 
surrender, which was transacted at Kn.xl'-.irgli. .ir.d 
inclu<led his personal estates, a- well .i~ h> k:ii,;':' n:, 
this imtnrtunate jiriiice retired t" lM-.,:.:la!;il. '■ 1 ne 
fate of E<hvard Balinl." say. Lord llailc-.. '-wa^ 
sin.:ular. la his invasion ol Scollar.d .;v,r;r.g tne 



72 



JOHN BALIOL. 



minority o£ David Bruce, he displayed a bold spirit 
of enterprise, and a courage superior to all difficulties. 
By the victory at Dupplin he won a crown; some 
few weeks after, he was surprised at Annan and lost 
it. The overthrow of the Scots at Halidon, to 
which he signally contributed, availed not to his re- 
establishment. Year after year he saw his partisans 
fall away, and range themselves under tiie banner 
of his competitor. He became the pensioner of 
Edward HI. and the tool of his policy, assumed or 
laid aside at pleasure: and at last, by his surrender 
at Roxburgh, he did what in him lay to entail the 
calamities of war upon the Scottish nation, a nation 
already miserable through the consequences of a 
regal succession disputed for threescore years. The 
remainder of his days was spent in obscurity; and 
the historians of that kingdom where he once reigned 
know not the time of his death." It may further be 
mentioned, that neither these historians, nor the 
Scottish people at large, ever acknowledged Edward 
Baliol as one of the line of Scottish monarchs. The 
right of the family of Bruce, thougli inferior in a 
hereditar}' point of view, having been confirmed by 
parliament on account of the merit of King Robert, 
this shadowy intruder, though occasionally dominant 
through the sword, could never be considered the 
legitimate monarch, more especially as he degraded 
himself and his country by a professed surrender of 
its independence, and even of a part of its territory, 
to a foreign enemy. He died childless, and, it 
would also appear, unmarried, in 1363, when he 
must have been advanced to at least the age of 
seventy. 

BALIOL, JoHX, King of Scotland, was the son 
of John de Baliol, of Bernard's Castle in the county 
of Durham, a lord of great opulence, being possessed 
of thirty knights' fees (equal to ;^i2,ooo of modern 
money), and who was a steady adherent of Henry 
HI. in all his civil wars. The mother of Baliol 
was Devorgilla, one of the three daughters and co-' 
heiresses of Allan, Lord of Galloway, by Margaret, 
eldest daughter of David, Earl of Huntingdon, 
brother of >Ialcolm IV. and William the Lion, kings 
of Scotland. The first of the English family of 
Baliol was a Xorman noble, proprietor of the manors 
of Baliol, Harcourt, Dampat, and Home in I" ranee, 
and who, coming over with the Conqueror, left a son, 
Guy, wliom William Rufus appointed to be lord 
of the forest of Teesdale and Marwood, giving him 
at the same time the lands of Middleton and Guise- 
ford in Northumberland. Guy was the father of 
Bernard, who built the strong castle on the Tees, 
called from him Beruard's Castle, luistace, son of 
this noljle, was the father of Hugh, wlio was the 
father of John de Baliol,' the father of the King of 
Scotland. 



1 Johndc Baliol has distinguished himself in English literary 
history, by founding one of the colleges of (Jxford, which still 
l>ears his name. As this institution is connected in more ways 
than one with Scotland, the following account of its foundation, 
frorn Chalmers llUloryof Oxford, may be read with interest: — 
"The wealth and political consecjucnce of John de I'aliol were 
dignified by a love of learning, and a l)enevolence of disposi- 
tion, which about the year 1263 or 1268, as Wood thinks , 
induced him to maintam certain yjoor scholars of Oxford, in 
number sixteen, by exhibitions, i)crhaps with a view to some 
more permanent establishment, when he should have leisure 
to mature a plan for that purpose. On his death in 1269, 
which appears from this circumstance to have been s\idden, he 
could only recommend the objects of his bounty to his lady 
.and his executors, but left no written deed or authority: and 
as what he had formerly given was from his personal estate, 
now in other hands, the farther care of his scholars would in 
all probability have ceased, had n'H his lady l«;en jiersuaded 
to fulfil his intention in the most honourable manner, by taking 
i;pon hsrself the future maintenance of them '1 he 



The circumstances which led to the appearance of 
John Baliol in Scottish history may Ix; thus briefly 
narrated. By the death of Alexander HI. the crown 
of Scotland devolved on the Maiden of Norway, 
Margaret, the only child of Alexander's daughter, 
late Queen of Norway. As she was only three years 
of age, and residing in foreign parts, the convention 
of estates made choice of six noblemen to be regents 
of the kingdom during her absence or minority; but 
dissensions soon arising among them, Eric, King of 
Norway, interposed, and sent plenipotentiaries to 
treat with Edward, King of England, concerning the 
affairs of the infant queen and her kingdom. Edward 
had already formed a scheme for uniting England and 
Scotland, by the marriage of his eldest son with 
Margaret, and accordingly, after holding conferences 
at Salisbur)', he sent an embassy to the parliament 
of Scotland on the 1 8th of July, 1290, with full powers 
to treat of this projected alliance. The views of 
Edward were cheerfully met by the parliament of 
Scotland: a treaty was drawn out honourable to both 
parties, in which — to guard against any danger that 
might arise from so strict an alliance with such a 
powerful and ambitious neighbour — the freedom and 
independency of Scotland were fully acknowledged 
and secured; and commissioners were despatched to 
Norway to conduct the young queen into her domin- 
ions. But this fair hope of lasting peace and union 
was at once overthrown by the death of the princess 
on her passage to Britain; and the crown of Scotland 
became a bone of contention between various 
competitors, the chief of whom were John Baliol, 
Lord of Galloway; Robert Bruce, Lord of Annan- 
dale; and John Hastings, Lord of Abergavenny. In 
order to understand the grounds of their several 
claims, it will be necessary to trace briefly their 
genealogy. 

On the death of the Maiden of Norway, Alex- 
ander's grandchild, the crown of Scotland devolved 
upon the posterity of David, Earl of Huntingdon, 
younger brother, as already mentioned, of the kings 
Malcolm and William. David left three daughters, 
Margaret, Isabella, and Ada. Margaret, the eldest 
daughter, married Allan, Lord of Galloway, by 
whom .she had an only daughter, Devorgilla, married 
to John Baliol, by whom she had John Baliol, the 
subject of this article, who therefore was great- 



first step which the Lady Devorgilla took, in providing for 
the scholars, was to have a house in Horsemonger Lane, after- 
wards called Canditch from Catuiida Fossa in St. ^L^ry 
^Lagdalene's parish, and on the site where the present college 
stands; and being supported in his design by her husband's 
executors, continued the provision which he .allotted. In 1282 
she gave them statutes under her .seal, and appointed Hugh de 
HartipoU and William de Menyle as procurators or governors 
of her scholars. ... In 1284 the Lady Devorgilla pur- 
chased a tenement of a citizen of Oxford, called Mary's Hall, 
■as a perpetual settlement for the principal and scholars of the 
house of Baliol. This edifice, after receiving suitable repairs 
and additions, was called New Baliol Hall, and their former 
residence then began to receive the name of (Jld Baliol Hall. 
The same year she made over certain lands in the county of 
Northumberland, the greater part of which was afterw.ards 
lost. The foundati(m. however, was about this time confirmed 
by Oliver, Bishop of Lincoln, and by the son of the founder, 
who was afterwards King of Scotland, and whose consent in 
this matter .seems to entitle him to the veneration of the society. 
. . . The revenues of the college were at first small, yield- 
ing only eightpence per 'avek to each scholar, or twcnty-.seven 
poimds nine shillings and fourjjence for the whole /<v (!«««;«. 
which was soon found insuflficient. A number of l>enefactors, 
however, promoted the purposes of the founder, by enriching 
the establishment with gifts of land, money, and church- 
livings." 

Mr. Chalmers also mentions, that in 1340 a new set of 
statutes for the college received, amongst other confirmatory 
seals, that of " Edward lialiol. King of .Scotland," namely, the 
grandson of the foimder. The seal attached by Devorgilla to 
the original statutes contains a portrait of her. She died in 
1289. 



JOHN BALIOL. 



73 



grandsoa to David, Earl of Huntingdon, by his 
eldest daughter. Isabella, the second daughter of 
David, married Robert Bruce, by whom she had 
Robert Bruce, the competitor — who therefore was 
grandson to tlie Earl of Huntingdon by his second 
daughter. Atla, youngest daughter of David, mar- 
ried John Hastings, by whom she had John Hastings 
— who therefore was grandson to David by his third 
daughter. Hastings could have no claim to the 
crown wliile the posterity of David's elder daughters 
were in b;iing; but he insisted that the kingdom 
should be divided into three parts, and that he 
should inherit one of them. As, however, the king- 
dom was declared in<livisible, his pretensions were 
excluded, and the difficulty of the question lay be- 
tween the two great competitors, Baliol and Bruce, 
— whether the more remote by one degree, descended 
from the eldest daughter, or the nearer l)y one degree, 
descended from the second daughter, had the better 
title. 

The divided state of the national mind as to the 
succession presented a favourable opportunity to the 
ambitious monarch of England for executing a design 
which he had long cherished against the independ- 
ence of Scotland, by renewing the unfounded claim 
of the feudal superiority of England over it. It has 
been generally supposed that he was chosen arbitrator 
by the regents and states of Scotland in the compe- 
tition for the crown; but it appears that liis interfer- 
ence was solicited by a few only of the Scottish 
nobles who were in his own interest. Assuming 
this, however, as the call of tlie nation, and collecting 
an army to support his iniquitous pretensions, he re- 
questetl the nobility and clergy of Scotland, and the 
competitors for the crown, to meet him at Norham 
within the P^nglish territories. There, after many 
professions of good-will and affection to Scotland, 
he claimed a right of lo;d paramount over it, and re- 
fjuired that this light should be immediately recog- 
nized. The Scots were struck with amazement at 
this unexpected demand; but, feeling themselves en- 
tirely in his power, could only retpiest time for the 
consideration of his claim. Another meeting was 
fixed upon; and during the interval he employed 
every method to strengthen his party in Scotland, 
and by threats and promises to bring as many as 
possible to acknowledge his superiority. His pur- 
pose was greatly forwarded by the mutual distrusts 
and jealousies that existed among the Scots, and by 
the time-serving ambition of the competitors, who 
were now multiplied to the number of thirteen — 
some probably stirred up to perplex the question, 
and others perhaps prompted by vanity. On the 
day appointed (2d June, 1291) in a plain opposite to 
the castle of Norham, the superiority of the crown of 
England overthe crown of Scotland was fully acknow- 
ledged by all the competitors for the latter, as well as 
by many barons and prelates; and thus Edward 
gained the object on which his heart had been long 
set, by conduct disgraceful to himself as it was to 
th')se who had the government and giiardianship of 
Scotland in keeping. All the royal castles and 
places of strength in the country were put into his 
hands, under the security that he should make full 
restitution in two months from the date of his award, 
and with the ostensible reason that he might have 
a kingdom to be-.tow on the person to whom it 
sliould be adjudged. I laving thus obtained his wish, 
he proceeded to take some steps towards determining 
the claim of the comju'titors. Commissioners were 
appointed to meet at Berwick; and after various de- 
liberations, the crijwn was finally adjudged to John 
Baliol, on the 19th of Novemljcr, 1292, and next day 
Baliol swore fealtv to Edward at Norham. 



Baliol was crowned at Scone shortly after; but, 
that he might not forget his dependency, Edward re- 
called him into England immediately after his coro- 
nation, and made him renew his homage and fealty 
at Newcastle. He was soon loaded with fresh in- 
dignities. In the course of a year he received no 
fewer than six citations to a|)i)ear before Eduard in 
the English parliament, to answer private and unim- 
portant comidaints which were preferred against him 
by his subjects. Although led by an insidious jx/iicy, 
and his own ambition, into the most humiliating con- 
cessions, Baliol seems not to have been destitute of 
spirit, or to have received without resentment the in- 
dignities laid upon him. In one of the causes before 
the parliament of England, being asked for his de- 
fence — "I am king of Scotland," he said, "I dare 
not make answer lure without the advice of my 
people." "What means this refusal?" said Edward, 
"you are my liegeman; you have done homage to 
me; you are here in consequence of my summons I" 
Baliol replied with firmness, "In matters which re- 
spect my kingdom I neither dare nor shall answer in 
this place, without the advice of my ])eople." Ed- 
ward requested that he would ask a delay for the 
consideration of the question; but Baliol, jjerceiving 
that his so doing would be construed into an acknow- 
ledgment of the jurisdiction of the English parlia- 
ment, refused. 

In the meantime, a war breaking out between 
France and England, Baliol seized upon it as a favour- 
able oijportunity for shaking off a yoke that had 
Viecome intoleraljle. He negotiated a treaty with 
Philip, the Erench king, on the 23d October, 1295, 
by which it was agreed to assist one ancnher against 
their common enemy, the King of England, and not 
to conclude any separate peace. At the same time 
Baliol solemnly renounced his allegiance to Edward, 
and received from the pope an absolution from the 
oaths of fealty which he had sworn. The grounds 
of his renunciation were these — That Edward had 
wantonly, and upon slight suggestions, summoned 
him to his courts; — that he had seized his English 
estates, his goods, and the goods of his subjects; — 
that he had forcibly carried off, and still retained, cer- 
tain natives of Scotland; — and that, when remon- 
strances were made, instead of redressing, he had 
continually aggravated these injuries. Pldward is 
said to have received BalioTs renunciation witli more 
contempt than anger. "The fool i.-,h traitor," lie ex- 
claimed, "since he will not come to us, we will go to 
him." He accordingly raised a large army; and. 
sending his brother into France, resolved himself, in 
person, to make a total contpiest of Scotland. 

While Edward advanced towards Berwick, a small 
army of Scots broke into NorthundK-rland and Cum- 
berland, and ])lundered the countiy. The ca-tle ni 
Werk was taken; and looo men, whom l-idward 
sent to jireserve it, falling into an amliusli, weic 
slain. An English squadron, also, which l)Iocked I'.ii 
Berwick l)y sea, was defeated, and sixteen ct their 
ships sunk. But these ]iartial succe--se> were I'l- 
lowed by fatal losses. The King of Ijiglaiui %\."- 
a brave and skilful general; he coiuluctci a ]M.\\er- 
ful army against a weak and di>pirite<l nation, l)ea':e<i 
by an unpopular jirince. and distracted by I'ar'.y ar.;- 
mosities. His eventual success was tl.ere!' le a~ 
complete as might have been antic;;. Ue'!. He 
crossed the Tweetl at Cold-tream. t.".k Herwi^k. v:A 
juit all the garrison and inhal'itaiiis to tl.c >\e. r.i. 
The castle of Roxburgh was deliverei! ii'.t'' hi- i.a;i<is; 
and he hastened Warenne. Earl of Sr.rrey. f rwanl, 
to besiege Dunbar. Warenne wa- t!xre met 1 y tlie 
Scots armv, who. aliandiining tlie a '.^ ..:.;.'ige oi tlieir 
situation, jioured down tuniultuou~iy y\\ li.e I^iigloh, 



74 



JOHN BALIOL. 



and were repulsed with terrible slaughter. After 
this defeat, the castles of Dunbar, Edinburgh, and 
Stirling fell into Edward's hands, and he was soon 
in possession of the whole of the south of Scotland. 

Baliol, who had retired beyond the river Tay with 
the shattered remains of his army, despairing of mak- 
ing any effectual resistance, sent messengers to im- 
plore the mercy of Edward. The haughty Planta- 
genet communicated the hard terms upon wliicli 
alone he might hope for what he asked; namely, 
an unqualified acknowledgment of his "unjust and 
wicked rebellion," and an unconditional surrender of 
himself and his kingdom into the hands of his master. 
Baliol, whose life presents a strange variety of mag- 
nanimous efforts and humiliating self-alxasements, 
consented to these conditions; and the ceremony of 
his degradation accordingly took place, July 2, 1296, 
in the cliurchyard of Stracatiiro, a village near Mon- 
trose. Led by force and in fear of his life into the 
presence of the Bishop of Durliam and the English 
nobles, mounted on a sorry horse, he was first com- 
manded to dismount; and his treason being pro- 
claime.l, they [jroceeded to strip him of his royal 
ornaments. The crown was snatched from his head, 
the ermine torn from his mantle, the sceptre wrested 
from his hand, and everytliing removed from him 
belonging to the state and dignity of a king. Dressed 
only in liis shirt and drawers, and holding a wliite 
rod in his liand, after tlie fashion of penitents, he 
confessed that, by evil and false counsel, and through 
his own simplicity, he had grievously offended his 
liege lord, recapitulated all the late transactions, and 
acknowledged himself to be deservedly deprived of 
his kingdom. He then absolved his people from their 
allegiance, and signed a deed resigning his sove- 
reignty over them into the hands of King Edward, 
giving his eldest son as a hostage for his fidelity. 

The acknowledgment of an English paramountcy 
has at all times been so disagreeable to the Scottish 
people, and the circumstances of this renunciation of 
the kingdom are so extremely humiliating to national 
pride, that John Baliol has l^een ever since held in 
hatred and contem])t, and is scarcely allowed a place 
in the ordinary rolls of the Scottish monarchs. It 
must i)e said, however, in his defence, that his first 
acknowledgment of the paramountcy was no more 
than what his rival Bruce and the greater part of the 
nobles of the kingdom were also guilty of; while he 
is certainly entitled to some credit for his efforts to 
shake otf the yoke, however inadequate his means 
were for doing so, or whatever ill fortune he experi- 
enced in the attempt. In his deposition, notwith- 
standing some equivocal circumstances in his sul^se- 
quent histfjry, he must l)e looked upon as only the 
victim of an overwhelming force. 

The hi^tory of John Haliol after his deposition is 
not in general treated with much minuteness Ijy the 
Scottish historians, all of whom seem to have wished 
to close their eyes as much as possible to the whole 
affair of the resignation, and endeavoured to forget 
that the principal personage crmcerned in it had ever 
been King of Scotland. This history, however, is 
curious. The discrowned monarch and his son were 
immediately transmitted, along with the stone of 
Scone, the records of the kingdom, and all other me- 
morials of the national indejiendence, to London, 
where the two unfortunate jjrinces were committed 
to a kind of honourable captivity in the Tower. 
Though the country was reducs-d by the ICnglish 
army, several insurrections which broke out in the 
subsequent year showed that the hearts of the ]K-ople 
were as yet unsubdued. Tlic^c insurgents invariably 
rose in the name of the dep'iscd king John, and 
avowed a resolution to submit to no otlier authoritv. 



It is also worth remarking, as a circumstance favour- 
able to the claims and character of Baliol, that he 
was still acknowledged by the pope, the King of 
P" ranee, and other continental princes. When Wal- 
lace rose to unite all the discontented spirits of the 
kingdom in one grand effort against the English 
yoke, he avowed himself as only the governor of the 
kingdom in name of King John; and there is a charter 
still extant, to which the hero appended the seal of 
Baliol, which seems, by some chance, to have fallen 
into his hands. The illustrious knight of Elderslie, 
throughout the whole of his career, acknowledged no 
other sovereign than Baliol; and, what is perhaps 
more remarkable, the father of Robert Bruce, who 
had formerly asserted a superior title to the 
crown, and whose son afterwards displaced the 
Baliol dynasty, appeared in arms against Edward in 
favour of King John, and in his name concluded 
several truces with the English officers. There is 
extant a deed executed on the 13th of November, 
1299, by William, Bishop of St. Andrews, Robert 
Bruce, Earl of Carrick, and John Comyn the younger, 
styling themselves guardians of the kingdom of Scot- 
land; in which they petition King Edward for a ces- 
sation of hostilities, in order, as they afterwards ex- 
pressed themselves, that they might live as peaceable 
subjects under their sovereign King John. 

There is, however, no reason to suppose that these 
proceedings were in accordance with any secret in- 
structions from Baliol, who, if not glad to get quit of 
his uneasy sovereignty at the time he resigned it, at 
least seems to have afterwards entertained no wish 
for its recovery. A considerable time before his in- 
surgent representatives made the above declaration 
in his behalf, he is found executing a deed of the fol- 
lowing tenor: "In the name of God, amen. In the 
year 1298, on the 1st of April, in the house of the 
reverend father, Anthony, Bishop of Durham, with- 
out London. The said bishoj) discoursing of the 
state and condition of the kingdom of Scotland, and 
of the inhabitants of the said kingdom, before the 
noble Lord John Baliol; the said John, of his own 
proper motion, in the presence of us, the notar}', and 
tlie su1)scribing witnesses, amongst other things, said 
and delivered in the French tongue to this effect, 
that is to say, that while he, the said realm of .Scot- 
land, as king and lord thereof, held and governed, 
he had found in the people of the said kingdom so 
much malice, fraud, treason, and deceit, that, for their 
malignity, wickedness, treachery, and other detestable 
facts, and for that, as he had thoroughly understood, 
they had, while their prince, contrived to poison him, 
it was his intention never to go or enter into the 
said kingdom of Scotland for the future, or with the 
said kingdom or its concerns, either by himself or 
others, to intermeddle, nor, for the reasons aforesaid, 
and many others, to liavc anything to do with the 
Scots. At the same time, the said John desired the 
said Bisho]> of Durham, that he would accpiaint the 
most magnificent jirince, and his lord, Edward, the 
most illustrious King of England, with his intention, 
will, and firm resolution in this respect. This act 
was signed and sealed by the public notary, in the 
presence of the Bishop of Durham aforesaid, and (jf 
Ralph de Sandwich, constable of the Tower of 
London, and others who heard this discourse."' 

We regret for the honour of Scotland, that, exce])t- 
ing the iiiitc ni this shameful libel, there is no other 
reason for sup]iosing it to be dictated in an insincere 
spirit. lialiol now appears to have really enter- 
tained no higher wish than to regain his ])ersonal 
liberty, and be permitted to spend the rest of his 



1 rryiiitc's CotlcciioKS, iii. CC5. 



JOHN BALLENTVNE. 



75 



days in retirement. Accordingly, having at last con- 
vinced King Kdward of his sincerity, he and his son 
were delivered, on the 20th of July, 1299, to the pope's 
legate, the IJishop of Vicenza, by whom they were 
transported to France. The unfortunate Baliol 
lived there upon his ample estates till the year 1314, 
when he died at his seat of Castle Galliard, aged 
about fifty-five years. Though thus by no means 
advanced in life, he is said to have been afflicted 
with many of the infirmities of old age, among which 
was an entire deprivation of sight. 

BALLENTYNE (or Bellenden), John,— 
otherwise spelled Ballaiiden and BalUntyn — an emi- 
nent poet of the reign of James V., and the translator 
of Boece's Latin History, and of the first five books of 
Livy, into the vernacular language of his time, was 
a native of Lothian, and appears to have been bom 
towards the close of the 15th century. lie studied 
at the university of St. Andrews, where his name is 
tiius entered in the records: "1508, yo. Balletyu 
nut. Lan [(/<;«/«?]." It is probable that he remained 
there for several years, which was necessary before 
he could be laureated. His education was afterwards 
completed at the university of Paris, where he took 
the degree of Doctor of Divinity; and, as has been 
remarked by his biographer \\Vorks 0/ Bellenden, 
i. .xxxvii.], "the effects of his residence upon the 
Continent may be traced both in his idiom and lan- 
guage." 

He returned to Scotland during the minority of 
James V., and became attached to the establishment 
of that monarch as "clerk of his comptis." 

The biographer of Ballentyne, above quoted, sup- 
poses tliat he must have been the "Maister Johnne 
Ballentyne" who, in 1528, was "secretar and servi- 
tour" to .Vrchiljald, Earl of Angus, and in that capa- 
city appeared before parliament to state his master's 
reasons for not answering the summons of treason 
which had been issued against him. We can scarcely, 
however, reconcile the circumstance of his being 
then a "Douglas's man," witii the favour he is found 
to have enjoyed a few years after with James V., 
whose antipathy to that family was so great as pro- 
bably to extend to all its connections. However 
this may be, Ballentyne is thus celebrated, in 1 530, 
as a court poet, by .Sir David Lyndsay, who had 
been in youth his fellow-student at St. Andrews, and 
was afterwards his fellow-servant in the household 
of the king: — 

Rut now of late h.is st.irt up heastily 
A cunning clerk that writelh craftily; 
.'\ plant of poets, called Ballaiitcii, 
Whose ornat writs my wit cannot defync; 
('••I he into the court authority. 
He will prccel Quintin and Renedy." 

I:i 1530 and 1 53 1 Ballentyne was cni]iloycd, by 
command nf the king, in translating Boece's History, 
which had been published at Paris in 1526. The 
object of this translation was to introduce the king 
and others w!i') had "missed their Latin" to a 
knowledge of the history of their country. In the 
epistle to the king at the conclusion of this work, 
Ballentyne passes a deserved compliment upon his 
majesty, for having "dantit this region and brocht 
the same to sicken rest, gud peace and trancitiillity ; 
howhcit tile same could iioclit be done be your gret 
baronis during your tender age;" and also savs. with- 
out much tlatten.-, "Your nobill and worthy deidis 
proceeils mair be natiirall inclinatii)n and active 
enrage, than ony gudly ]ior>uasioun of assisteris." 
He also attests his own sincerity by a lecture to tl-.e 
king on the difference between tyrannical and just 
government; wliich, as a curious s'lecimtn of tl;e 



prose composition of that time, and also a testimony 
to the enlightened and upright character of Ballen- 
tyne, we shall extract into these pages: — 

"As Seneca says, in his tragedeis, all ar nocht 
kingis that bene clothit with purpure and dredoure, 
but only they that sekis na singulare proffet, in dam- 
mage of the commonweill; and sa vigikant that the 
life of their subdetis is mair deir and jirecious to 
them than thair awin life. Ane tyrane sekis rithe.s; 
ane king sekis honour, conquest be virtew. .Ane 
tyrane governis his realmis be slauchter, dredoure, 
and falset; ane king gidis his realme be prudence, 
integrite, and favour. Ane tyrane suspeckis all them 
that hes riches, gret dominioun, auctorite, or gret 
rentis; ane king haldis sic men for his maist helply 
friendis. Ane tyrane luftis nane bot vane fleschouris, 
vicious and wicket lynimaris, be quliais counsall he 
rages in slauchter and tyranny; ane king luftis men 
of wisdom, gravite, and science; knawing weill that 
his gret materis maybe weill dressit be thair jinidence. 
Treuth is that kingis and tyrannis hes mony handis, 
mony ene, ancl mony mo memberis. Ane tyrane 
sets him to be dred; ane king to be luffet. .-Vne 
tyrane rejoises to mak his pepill pure; ane king to 
mak thame riche. Ane tyrane draws his pepill to 
sindry factiones, discord, and hatrent; ane king maks 
peace, tranquillite, and concord; knawing nothing .-a 
dammagious as division amang his subdittis. Ane 
tyrane confounds all divine and hummane lawis; ane 
king observis thaime, and rejoises in equite and 
justice. All thir jiroperteis sal be patent, in reding 
the livis of gud and evil kingis, in the historj- pre- 
cedent." 

To have spoken in this way to an absolute jirince 
shows Ballentyne to have been not altogether a 
courtier. 

Heaftenvardsadds, in a finely impassioned strain: 
— ■" Quhat thing maybe mair i>Ie>and than to se in 
this present volume, as in ane cicir mirroure, all the 
variance of tyme bygane; the sindr\- chancis of 
fourtoun; the bludy fechting and terrible berganis sa 
mony years continuit, in the defence of your realm 
and liberte; quhilk is fallen to your hieness with gret 
felicite, howbeit the saniin has aftinies been ransomit 
with maist nobill blude of your antecessoris. Quhat 
is he that wil nocht rejoise to heir the knychtly 
afarii of thay forcy campions. King Robert Bruce 
and William Wallace? The fir.-~t, Ije iiir.ative 
desyre to recover his realme, wes brocht to sic 
calamite, that mony dayis he durst nocht appeir in 
sicht of pepill; but amang desertis, levand on rutes 
and hcrbis, in es]ierance of better fortoun; bot at 
Ia>t, be his singulare manheid, he come to sic pre- 
eminent glore, that now he is reput the maist vrd- 
yeant prince that was eftir or before his empire. 
This other, of small beginning, be feris curagc ar.d 
corporall strength, not only jiut Knglishmen out ot 
Scotland, but als, be feir of his awful vi>age. ] i:l 
Kdward king of England to tlicht; and held all the 
borders fornence .Scotland waist." 

Ballentyne delivered a manuscript copy ot ir.s 
work to the king, in the summer of 1533, and al-'Ut 
the snme time he appears to lia\e i)een eiigai;ed ;r. n 
tran>lation of Livy. The following entrie- \:\ ti'.o 
treasurer's book ''ive a curious view ot the 1 rcL- 



the 



irl of 



of literar\' labour 
(lavs: — 

"To Ma!>ter Jolm Ballertyii- i<c 
ccpt, fir hi- translating of the ('l^ron\ 

•■1531, Oct. 4lh. To Master J-! 
he the kingi- i-recejl. for il:- tiui. 
(.■hro.ve!;--. '/30. 

"Item. Thnirefier to the ^.^:d 
the k:;; -i- C'j'niman :. ''•■ 



kin. 



M 



ROBERT BALMER. 



"'533' J^'y 26. To Maister John Ballentyne, 
for ane new Chronikle gevin to the kingis grace, ;^I2. 

"Item, To him in part payment of the translation 
of Titus Livius, ;^8. 

" Aug. 24. To Maister John Ballentyne, 

in part payment of the second buke of Titus Livius, 

" Nov. 30. To Maister John Ballentyne, be 

the kingis precept, for his laboris dune in translat- 
ing of Livie, ;^20." 

The literary labours of Ballentyne were still fur- 
ther rewarded by his royal master, with an aj^point- 
ment to the archdeanery of Moray, and the escheated 
property and rents of two individuals, who became 
subject to the pains of treason for having used in- 
fluence with the pope to obtain the same benefice, 
against the king's privilege. He subsequently got 
a vacant prebendaryship in the cathedral of Ross. 
His translation of Boece was printed in 1536, by 
Thomas Davidson, and had become in later times 
almost unique, till a new edition was published in a 
remarkably elegant style, in 182 1, by Messrs. Tail, 
Edinburgh. At the same time appeared the trans- 
lation of the first two books of Livy, whicli had 
never before been printed. Tiie latter work seems 
to have been carried no further by the translator. 

Ballentyne seems to have lived happily in the sun- 
shine of court favour during the remainder of the 
reign of James W The opposition which he after- 
wards presented to the Reformation brought him 
into such odium, that he retired from his country in 
disgust, and died at Rome, about the year 1550. 

The translations of Ballentynj are characterized by 
a striking felicity of language, and also by a freedom 
tliat shows his profound acquaintance with the learned 
language upon which he wrought. His Chronicle, 
which closes with tlie reign of James I., is rather 
a paraphrase than a literal translation of ]5oece, and 
jjossesses in several respects the character of an 
original work. Many of the historical errors of the 
latter are corrected — not a k\v of his redundancies 
retrenched — and his more glaring omissions supplied. 
.Several passages in tlie work are highly elegant, and 
some descriptions of particular incidents reacli to 
something nearly akin to the sublime. Many of tlie 
works of Ballentyne are lost — among others a tract 
on the Pythagoric letter, and a discourse upon virtue 
and pleasure. He also wrote many political pieces, 
the most of which are lost. Those which have 
reached us are princijially jiroems j)refi.\ed to his 
pru:ie works — a species of composition not apt to 
bring out the better qualities of a poet; yet they ex- 
hildi the workings of a rich and luxuriant fancy, and 
abound in lively sallies of the imagination. They 
are generally allegorical, and distinguished rather by 
incidental Ijeauties than by the skilful structure of 
the fable. The story, indeed, is often dull, the allu- 
sions obscure, ami the general scoijc of the piece un- 
intelligil)le. Tliese faults, however, are pretty general 
characteristics of allegorical poets, and they are 
atoned for, in him, by the striking thoughts and the 
charming (lescri])tions in wliich he abounds, and 
which, "like threds of gold, tlie rich anas, beautify 
his works (juile thorow.'' 

BALMER, Rkv. Rf)[iERT, D.D.— This profound 
theologian and valued ornament of the Secession 
Church, was born at (Jrmiston Mains, in the ])arish 
of Kckford, Koxl)urgh--hire, on the 22d of Xovcmber, 
1787. His father, who was a land-steward, was a 
man in comfortaljle though not aflluent circum>taiic(.'s, 
and Robert's earliest education — besides tlie ordi- 
nary advantages which the ])easantry of .Scotland 
possessed — enjoyed the inestimable benefit of a care- 



ful religious superintendence, both of his parents 
being distinguished for piety and intelligence. The 
result of such training was quickly conspiaious in the 
boy, who, as soon as he could read, was an earnest 
and constant reader of the Bible, while his questions 
and remarks showed that he studied its meaning 
beyond most persons of his age. His thirst for 
general knowledge was also evinced by a practice 
sometimes manifested by promising intellectual boy- 
hood — this was the arresting of every stray leaf that 
fell in his way, and making himself master of its 
contents, instead of throwing it carelessly to the 
winds. On the death of his father, Robert, who, 
although only ten years old, was the eldest of the 
family, on the evening of the day of the funeral, 
quietly placed the books for family worship before 
his widowed mother, as he had wont to do before 
his departed parent when he was alive. She burst 
into tears at this touching remembrance of her be- 
reavement, but was comforted by the considerate 
boy, who reminded her that God, who had taken 
away his father, would still be a Father to them, and 
would hear them — "and, mother," he added, "we 
must not go to bed to-night without worshipping 
him." Consolation so administered could not be 
otherwise than effectual: the psalm was sung, the 
chapter read, and the prayer offered up by the 
sorrowing widow in the midst of her orphans; and 
the practice was continued daily for years, until 
Robert was old enough to assume his proper place 
as his father's representative. 

The studious temperament of Robert Balmer, 
which was manifested at an early period, appears to 
have been not a little influenced by his delicate 
health, that not only prevented him from joining in 
the more active sports of his young coin])eers, 
but promoted that thoughtfulness and sensibility 
by which sickly boyhood is frequently characterized. 
The same circumstance also pointed out to him his 
proper vocation; and he said, on discovering his 
inability even for the light work of the garden, 
"Mother, if I do not gain my bread by my head, I'll 
never do it with my hands." As to which of the 
learned professions he should select, the choice may 
be said to have been already made in consetjuence 
of his domestic training: he would lie a minister of 
the gospel, and that too in the .Secession Church to 
which his parents belonged. He proceeded to the 
study of Latin, first at the parish school of More- 
battle, and afterwards that of Kelso, at the latter of 
which seminaries he formed a close acquaintanceship 
with his schoolfellow, Thomas I'ringle, afterwards 
known as the author of African Sketches, which was 
continued till death. In 1802 Mr. Balmer entered the 
university of Edinburgh, and, after passing through the 
usual course of classical, ethical, and scientific study, 
was enrolled as a student in theology in connection 
with the Associate .Synod. Even already he had 
established for himself such a resjjcctable intellectual 
reputation, that his young brethren in prcjiaration 
for the ministry received him with more than or- 
dinary welcome. As iJr. l.awson, the theological 
l^rofessor of the Associate Synod, lectured only for 
two months of each year, at the end of summer and 
commencement of autumn, Mr. I'almer, in common 
with several of his fellow-students, attended the 
regular course of theology during the winters at the 
university of Edinburgh. They thus availed them- 
selves of the twofold means of imi)rovcinent which 
they possessed, without any compromise of their 
jirinciples being exacted in return; and the fruits of 
this were manifest in after-life, not only by the highly 
superior attainments of many of the Secessidn ministry, 
but the liberal spirit and kindly feeling which they 



ROBERT BALMER. 



77 



learned to cherish toward their brethren of the 
Established Church, and the affectionate intercourse 
that often continued lietween them to the end. This, 
however, alarmed some of the elder and more rigid 
brethren of the Synod: they thought that this lil)er- 
ality savoured of lukewarmness, and would in time 
prove a grievous snare; and, under the imjiression, 
an overture was introduced into the Synod, for the 
prevention of all such erratic courses in future. The 
students of Selkirk who studied under Dr. Lawson 
took the alarm at this threatened restriction, and the 
petition and remonstrance presented by them in vin- 
dication was drawn up by Mr. Balmer. Although 
some indignation was expressed at the students for 
the liberty they had thus taken in addressing the 
supreme court of their church, the petition was re- 
ceived by the Synod, and the obnoxious overture dis- 
missed. One of the senior and leading members 
observed on this occasion that he would be sorry to 
see any measure adopted which would tend to drive 
from their body the man who could write such 
a paper. 

After having finished the four years' course of 
divinity prescribed by the Presbyterian churches of 
Scotland, it was expected that ^Ir. Balmer should 
apply for license as a preacher. This was the more 
necessary in the communion to which he belonged, as 
the number of its licentiates scarcely equalled that of 
the vacant congregations. But, to the surprise of his 
friends, he held back for two years, and his delay was 
attributed to unworthy motives. Already one of the 
most promising students of the connection, it was 
thought that he demurred from mere pride of intellect, 
and was unwilling to identify himself with a cause 
which as yet had produced so few men of high mark: 
others, who were aware that he had already been ad- 
vised to pass over to the Established Churcii, and 
share in its honours and emoluments, imagined that 
he had taken the advice to heart, and only waited the 
fit season for such a step. But these surmises were 
as unkind as they were untrue. His ambition went 
no higher than to be the humble useful minister of 
some countiy Burgher congregation, while his hu- 
mility confirmed him in the belief that he would 
have for his brethren men of still higher attainments 
than his own. His delay entirely originated in 
scniples of conscience. He had thouglit anxiously 
and profoundly upon tlie subject, and could not wholly 
admit the formula which he would be required to 
subscribe as a licentiate. "On the ([uestion," he after- 
wards said, "demanding an assent to the Confession 
and Catechisms, I stated, that to me these documents 
appeared so extensive and multifarious as to be dis- 
proportioned to the narrow limits of the human mind; 
that I at least had not studied ever)- expression in 
them so carefully as to be prepared to assent to it 
with the solemnity of an oath; that I approved of 
them, however, in so tar as I had studied them; and 
that tlie Tresbytery might ascertain, by strict examina- 
tion, the amount of my attainments, and treat me ac- 
cordingly —wliich of course they did." His scruples 
were res|)ected, his explanations in assenting to the 
formula atlinilled; and on the 4th of August, 1S12, 
he was licen-ed as a preacher of the gospel by the 
Associate l'rcsl)ytery of Ediiil>urgh. 

On commencing the great work to wliich all his 
studies had l)een directed, .Mr. Balmer began under 
rather inauspicious circumstances. All are aw.ire 
how essential certain external advantages are in the 
formation of an accejitable and po]">uiar preacher, and 
how completely a dissenting preacher deiiends upon 
this p<}pularity for his call ti> the ministn,-, and the 
successful discharge of his duties. But in the graces 
of person and manner Mr. Balmer was decidedly 



wanting. His eyes, from their weakness, had an un- 
pleasant cast, and his figure was ungainly; his voice 
was monotonous; and his gestures were, to say the 
least, inelegant. For a person in his pl)^ition to sur- 
mount such olKtacles argued a mind of no ordinary 
power. And he did surmount them. Such was the 
depth and originality of thought, the power of lan- 
guage, and heart-moving unction which his sermons 
possessed, that his growing acceptability bade fair in 
a short time to convert these defects into positive ex- 
cellencies in the eyes of his captivated auditories. 
In a few months he received calls from not less than 
four congregations, so that he would have l>een in a 
strait to choose, had not the laws of his church jjro- 
vided for such doubtful emergencies. Amid such 
competition, the choice devolved upon the Synod, 
modified, however, by the personal wishes of the 
preacher thus called; and on Balmer expressing a 
preference for the congregation at Berwick, he was 
ordained its minister on the 23d of March, 1814. 

The life of a Secession minister in a third-rate 
town affords few points for a limited memoir. They 
are also of such, a regular monotonous character, 
that the history of a single month is a sufficient 
specimen of whole years so occupied. And yet, 
while thus employed, Mr. Balmer was neither a dull 
nor inefficient workman. He threw the whole of his 
large intellect and warm heart into his sacred duties; 
and while he secured the love of his congregation, 
his reputation was silently growing and going on- 
ward, until, without seeking it, he found himself a 
man of high mark and influence in that important 
segment of the church universal to which he belonged. 
And all the while he was continuing to improve his 
faculties, and extend his intellectual resources, for 
his was not a mind to rest satisfied with past acquire- 
ments, however sufficient they might be for the 
present demand. Events also occurred, or were 
searched out and found sufficient to keep up that 
wholesome stir of mind without which the best of 
duties are apt to become a monotonous task. Among 
these was the exercise of his pen in a review of the 
work of Hall of Leicester on Terms of Commitnioii, 
which was inserted in two numbers of the Christian 
Repository of 1 81 7. He was also on several occa- 
sions a visitor to London, whither he was called on 
clerical duty; and in these southward journeys he 
enjoyed much "colloquy sublime" with Robert Hall, 
of whom his reminiscences are among the most in- 
teresting that have appeared of that great puljiit 
orator and theological metaphysician. He also touk 
a keen interest in the union of the two parties of the 
Secession Church, known by the name of Burghers 
and Anti-burghers, which took place in 1S20. This 
was an event that was dear to his heart, fiir not only 
was he a lover of Christian concord, and the eneiriy 
(;f all infinitesimal distinctions that keep brethren 
asunder, hut he had been bom in that union; li_r 
although his fatlier and mother had belonged to 
the diflercnt parties, they had always lived nii'i 
acted as thiise who are completely at one. In iS;o 
he married Miss Jane .'^eott, daughter ut Mr. 
Alexander Scott of .\l)erdeen. an<i si-ter of J.'l;:i 
Scott, the well-known author uf I'.nts :<' /',!r;s. In 
the year following he was involvel — a> v. li.it ir.ur.-- 
ter in .Scotland was not more or Ie>.> in\""lveci .' -;;i 
what is still vividly remembered uivkr tlie name ■ t 
tlie " .\]xxTypha controver-y." .Mr. r.ainK-r eii- 
deav<niivd on this oecasiiin to rec'iiieile '.lie center.. 1-^ 
ing parties, and was requited by tlie ^u-i ;e."i.^ "t 
the one, and tlie active !i--tili!y ..'f tiie ctlier, t".T hi,- 
jiains. Sucli was the fate i>f not a tVw at :l'.;s time 
whoendeaviuired to ]ieri'i'nn the ]\art "t ] eaeen\Tker-. 
Thev are "blessed' indeed— but nut uf men, and 



78 



ROBERT BALMER HENRY BALXAVES. 



must look elsewhere than to the earth for their 
reward. After the Apocryphical, the Voluntary 
controversy predominated, in which the Seces- 
sion, utterly renouncing the Establishment principle, 
which it had hitherto recognized in theory, became 
thoroughly and completely a dissent, by proclaiming 
the inexpediency and unlawfulness of civil establish- 
ments of religion, and contending for a separation 
between church and state. On this occasion, Mr. 
Balnier took the part that might have been exjiected 
from his character and situation. He was allied in 
friendship with many ministers of the Established 
Church; and, in common with many of his brethren, 
he was conscious of the fickleness of popular rule. 
All this was well so long as the question was left to 
every man's conscience. But when it swelled into 
a public controversy, and when every person, was 
obliged to take a side, and be either the friend or 
the enemy of voluntaryism, Mr. Balmer acted as 
every Secession minister did, who still meant to 
abide at his post. He thought that the voluntary 
system, although an evil, was the least evil of the two, 
and therefore he became its apologist and advocate. 
On the death of Ur. Dick of Glasgow, who for 
thirteen years had been professor of theology in the 
Associate, and afterwards in tlie United Associate 
Synod, it was resolved to establish three divinity 
professorships, instead of one. On this occasion 
Mr. Balmer's high talents were recognized, by his 
appointment, in 1S34, first to the chair of pastoral 
theology, and afterwards to that of systematic theo- 
logy. Although Glasgow was the sphere of his 
professorship, his duties called him away from 
Berwick only two months in the year. The duties 
of such a brief session, however, were scarcely less 
tiian those of a six months' course in our well-en- 
dowed universities. Tiie following is an account of 
them given by one of his pupils: — "It is not, I pre- 
sume, necessary to say more of the nature of his 
course than that it consisted of five parts — one pre- 
liminary, on the Christian evidences; one supple- 
mentary, on Christian morals; the other three con- 
sisting respectively of — topics in revelation prepara- 
tory to the scheme of redemption; of the work of the 
Redeemer; and of the blessings of redemption. 
Those subjects were gone over in a series of lectures, 
extending over the last three years of the students' 
course. Each session occupied eight weeks, and the 
number of weekly lectures, each of an hour's length, 
was five, so that the total number delivered in a full 
course was, after every abatement for interruption 
and irregularity, somewliere l)e]ow 120. Another 
hour daily was somewhat irregularly divided between 
examinations, or ratlier oral lectures, and hearing of 
the discourses of between fjrty and fifty students, in 
the third and fiftli years of tlieir progress, to which 
was sometimes added an occasional voluntary essay." 
Of the manner in wliich these duties were discharged, 
the same pu])il affectionately adds: — "Who can ever 
forget the hours spent in hearing these ])rclections, 
or the singularly impressive manner of him liy wliom 
they were delivered? The simplicity of the recluse 
student, exalted into the heavenliness of mature 
saintship — the dignified composure, mixed with 
kindly interest — the look of unworldly jnirity and 
abstract intelligence, that more tlian redeemed tlie 
peculiar and unpromising features — the venerable 
hoary head, that no one could refuse to rise up and 
honour — all strongly fixed the eye; and tlien came 
the full stream of a never-to-be-forgotten ^oice, 
monotonous only in simple and unimportant sen- 
tences, but varied in striking cadence through all the 
memliers of an exquisitely balanced period, and now 
kindling into animation and emjihasis in t!yj glow of 



argument, now sinking into thrilling solemnity and 
tenderness with the falls of devout emotion; while 
all the while no play of look, or fervour of tone, or 
strange sympathetic gesture, could disturb your idea 
of the reigning self-possession and lofty moral dignity 
of the speaker. Never had lecturer a more attentive 
audience. The eagerness of note-taking alone broke 
the general silence." 

When these important labours were finished, Mr. 
Balmer returned at the end of each session to Berwick, 
not for the purpose of rest, however, but to resume 
his clerical duties with double vigour. In this way 
his life went on from year to year — silent indeed, 
and overlooked by the world in general; but who 
can trace or fully estimate the effects of such a life 
upon the generations to come? He who in such 
fashion rears up teachers of religion may live and die 
unnoticed, but never unfelt : his deeds will travel 
onward from generation to generation, even when 
his name has utterly passed away; he will still live 
and instruct, in his pupils, and the disciples of his 
pupils, though his dust may long ago have mouldered 
in the winds. In 1S40 Mr. Balmer received from 
the university of St. Andrews the degree of Doctor 
in Divinity, which was conferred upon him by the 
senatus without influence or solicitation. During 
the latter years of his life, a controversy was 
agitated in the United Secession upon the extent of 
the atonement, which threatened at one time to rend 
that church asunder. In such a case, it could not 
be otherwise than that Dr. Balmer, however un- 
willingly, should express his sentiments upon the 
question at issue. This he did, but with such 
gentleness and moderation, as to soften the keenness 
of debate, and increase the general esteem in which 
he was held by all parties. After this his season 
arrived in which every theological doubt and diffi- 
culty ends in unswerving and eternal certainty. A 
short but severe illness, the result of mental anxiety 
acting upon a feeble frame — the first and last attack 
of serious pain and sickness he had ever felt — ended 
his life on the 1st of July, 1844. This event, how- 
ever anticipated t"rom his years and gi'owing infirmi- 
ties, not only threw his whole congregation into the 
deepest sorrow, each individual feeling himself 1)e- 
reaved of an honoured and affectionate father, but 
struck with a sudden thrill the extensive Associate 
Secession church through its whole range in Scot- 
land and England. Even the funeral of Dr. Balmer 
was significant of his catholic liberality and high 
talents — of one who had lived in Christian peace and 
love with all, and won the admiration and esteem 
of all; for in the town business was sus])ended, the 
inhabitants assembleil as if some prince of the land 
was to be honoured and bewailed in his death, and 
the coffin was followed to the grave by the ministers of 
every denomination, both of the English and Scottish 
Establishment and dissent, who dwelt in the town 
and countr)'. A monumental obelisk was soon after 
erected over the grave by his affectionate congrega- 
tion. Two volumes of his writings have also been 
pul)lished since his death, the one consisting of 
pulpit discourses, and the other of academical 
lectures, in which the high estimate taken of his 
talents by the church to which he belonged is fully 
justified. 

BALNAVES, Henry, of ITalhill, an eminent lay 
reformer, and also a theological writer of some emi- 
nence, was born of ])oor parents in the town of 
Kirkcaldy. After an academical course at St. An- 
drews, he travelled to the Continent, and, hearing of 
a free school in Cologne, jirocured admission to it, 
and received a liberal education, together Avith in- 



HENRY BALNAVES 

struction in Protestant principles. Returning to his 
native countn-, he applied himself to the study of 
law, and acted for some time as a procurator at St. 
Andrews. In the year 1538 he was appointed by 
James V. a senator of the College of Justice, a court 
only instituted five years before. Notwithstanding 
the jealousy of the clergy, who hated him on account 
of his religious sentiments, he was employed on im- 
portant embassies by James V., and subsequently by 
the governor Arran, (hiring the first part of whose 
regency he acted as secretary of state. Having 
at length made an open profession of the Pro- 
testant religion, he was, at the instigation of Arran's 
brother, the Abbot of Paisley, dismissed from tliat 
situation. He now appears to have entered into 
the interests of the English party against the gover- 
nor, and accordingly, with the Earl of Rothes and 
Lord Gray, was thrown into Hlackness Castle (No- 
vember, 1543), where he probably remained till re- 
lieved next year on the appearance of the Englisli 
fleet in the Firth of Forth. There is much reason to 
believe that this sincere and pious man was privy to 
the conspiracy formed against the life of Cardinal 
Beaton; an action certainly not the brightest in the 
page of Scottish history, bat of wliich it is not too 
much to say, that it miglit have been less defensible 
if its motive had not been an irregular kind of 
{patriotism. Balnaves, though he did not appear 
among the actual perpetrattjrs of the assassination, 
soon after joined them in tlie castle of .St. Andrews, 
which they held out against the governor. He was 
consequently declared a traitor, antl excommunicated. 
His principal employment in tlie service of the con- 
spirators seems to have been that of an ambassador 
to the English court. In February, 1 546-7, he ob- 
tained from Henry VIII. a subsidy of ;i^i 180, besides 
a quantity of provisions for his compatriots, and 
a pension n( jTii^ to himself, whicii was to run from 
the 25th of M.arch. On the 15th of this latter month 
he had become bound, along with his friends, to de- 
liver up Queen Mary, and also the castle of .St. An- 
drews, into the hands of the English; and in May he 
obtained a further sum of ^300. While residing in 
the castle, he was instrumental, along with Mr. Jolin 
Rough and Sir David Lindsay of the Mount, in \ne- 
vailing upon John Knox to preach publicly in .St. 
Andrews — the first regidar ministration in tlie re- 
formed religion in .Scotland. 

When the defenders of the castle surrendered in 
.\ugust, Balnaves shared in their fate, along with 
Knox and many other eminent persons. He was 
conveyed to the castle of Rouen, in France, and 
there committed to close confinement. Vet he still 
found occasional opportunities to communicate with 
his friend Knox. Having employed himself during 
his solitary hours in composing a treatise on Justifica- 
tion, he conveyed it to the refonner, who was so 
much pleased with it. that he divided it into chapters, 
added some marginal notes and a cf)ncise epitome of 
its contents and prefixed a commendatory dedication, 
inten<iing that it should be pul)iislied in' Scotland as 
soon .as opportunity ofiTered. This work fell aside 
for some years, but, after Knox's death, w.as dis- 
covered in the liouse of ( )rmi>ton In- Richard Banna- 
tyne, and was init)lished .at Edinlnirgh, in 15S4, under 
the title of 7Vi,' Coiijl-isioit of Fait It, containiir^, luric 
the- Trouhh-d Man s/ioidd s,rk Rrfii^^e at Iiis God, 
thereto led by Faith, err.: Compiled by M. Jleinie 
Balnaves of Halhill, one of the J^^rds of Session and 
Counsell of Scotland, bem^' a Prisoner xoiihin the Old 
Pallaiec of Roane, in the )iV7r of our I^ord 154S. 
Direct to his faithful Brethren bein.; in like Trouble or 
more, and to all True Proressors and Fazourers of the 
Syncere H'erde :f Cod. L'r. M'Cnelias given ionu 



GEORGE BANN.\TVNE. 



79 



extracts from this work in his life of John Knox. 
After his return from banishment, Balnaves took 
a bold and conspicuous part in the contest carrietl on 
by the lords of the congregation against the regent 
Mary. He wxs one of the commissioners who, in 
February, 1559 60, settled the treaty at Berwick 
between the former insurgent body and the (^ueen 
of England, in consequence of which the Scottish 
reformation was finally established through ai<l from 
a country always heretofore tlie bitterest enemy of 
Scotland. In 1563 he was rea])poiiUed to the bench, 
and also nominated as one of the commissioners for 
revising the Book of Discipline. He acted some 
years later, along with Buchanan and others, as 
counsellors to tlie Earl of Murray, in the celebrated 
inquiry V^y English and Scottish c-mmissioners into 
the alleged guilt of Queen Mar\-. He died, according 
to Mackenzie, in 1579. 

"In liis 'Treatise upon yustification,"' says the latter 
authority, "he affirms that the justification spoken 
of by .St. James is different from that spoken of by 
.St. Paul; for the justification by good works, which 
.St. James speaks of, only justifies us before man; but 
the justification by faith, which St. Paul speaks of, 
justifies us before God: and that all, yea, even the 
best of our good works, are but sins before (Jod." 

"And," adds Mackenzie, with true Jacoljite sar- 
casm, "whatever may be in this doctrine of our 
author's, I think we may grant to him that the most 
of all his actions which he valued himself upon, and 
reckoned good works, were really :e;reat and heinous 
sins before Cod, for no good man will justify reljellion 
and murder." 

Without entering into the controversies involved 
by this proposition, either as to tlie death of Cartiinal 
Beaton or the accusations against Queen Mary, wc 
may content ourselves with quoting the opinion en- 
tertained of ISalnaves by the good and moderate 
Melville: he was, according to this writer, "a godly, 
learned, wise, and long experimented counsellor. " 
"A poem" by Balnaves, entitled .-/// Advice to Head- 
strong Youth, is selected from Bannatyne's manuscrij't 
into The Evergreen. 

BA^TSTATYXE, George, t.ikes his title to .1 
place in this work from a source of fatne partici- 
pated by no other individual within the range <.f 
.Scottish bic)grai)hy: it is to this person that we aic 
indelHed for the preservation of nearly all the pro- 
ductions of the Scottish poets of the fifteentli and 
sixteenth centuries. Though the services he has 
thus rendered to his countrv' were in some measure 
the result of accident; yet it is also evident that, if 
lie had not Iieeii a person of eminent literary taste, 
and also partly a ])oet iiimself, we shc)uld never li.T.e 
had to celebrate him as a collector of ]')oetry. Tl.e 
com])ound claim which he has thus established to 
our notice, and tlie curious antique ])icture which !- 
presented to our eye liy even the little that is kiiow:; 
regarding his cliaracter and inirsuits, will, it ;- 
hoped, amply justify his aihnission into this g.i:le:y 
of eminent Scotsmen. 

George Baniiatyne was b(>rn in an elewiled r.-;,k 
of society. His father, James Bannr.t y;i.e. "I liic 
Kirktown of Newtyle, in the county of I'orfar. m.'.- 
a writer in lulinburgli, at a time \\ hen t!:at ]'r(ile--ii :; 
must have been one of some distinction and r.int;. : 
and lie was jiroba!)!)- the ]-.crsoii aliu'Ie'! '." \<\ R'.hi.;; 
Semple in The dljens ,f Cr^^eell S,:::d\ i. :::.:- :^ 



It al-o apjienrs tiiat Janxs 1 ^^:l:.^.;^■:".e h-:'A the 
■-•f 'I'ali. i.AK ic i:.^ Lur i; vf ^c^s.u:). ::; ^^i..c!l 



Co 



GEORGE BAXNATYNE. 



his eldest son (afterwards a Lord of Council and 
Session) was conjoined with him as successor, by 
royal precept, dated May 2, 1583. James Bannatyne 
is further ascertained to have been connected with 
the very ancient and respectable flimily of Bannach- 
tyne, or Bannatyne, of Camys (now Karnes), in the 
island of Bute. He was the father, by his wife 
Katharine Tailliefer, of twenty-three children, nine 
of whom, who survived at the time of his death, in 
15S3, were "weill and sufficiently provydit be him, 
under God." 

George Bannatyne, the seventh child of his parents, 
was born on the 22d day of February, 1545, and 
was bred up to trade.' It is, however, quite uncer- 
tain at what time he began to be engaged in business 
on his own account, or whether he sjjcnt his youth in 
business or not. Judging, however, as the world is 
apt to judge, we should suppose, from his taste for 
poetry, and his having been a writer of verses him- 
self, that he was at least no zealous applicant to any 
commercial pursuit. Two poems of his, written 
before the age of twenty-three, are full of ardent 
though conceited affection towards some fair mistress, 
whom he describes in the most extravagantly compli- 
mentary terms. It is also to be supposed that, at 
this age, even though obliged to seek some amusement 
during a time of necessary seclusion, he could not have 
found the means to collect, or the taste to execute, 
r,uch a mass of poetry as that which bears his name, if 
he had not previously been almost entirely abandoned 
to this particular pursuit. At the same time there is 
some reason to suppose that he was not altogether an 
idle young man. given up to vain fancies, from the 
two fii-st lines of his valedictory address at the end 
of liis collection: 

"Heir enclls this biiik writtin in tyine of pest, 
Quhen wc/m labor vrm compel'd to rest." 

Of tlie transaction on which the whole fame of 
George Bannatyne rests we give the following inter- 
esting account from the memoir just quoted: — 

"It is seldom that the toils of the amanuensis are 
in themselves interesting, or that, even while enjoying 
the advantages of the poor scribe's labour, we are dis- 
posed to allow him the merit of more than mere 
mechanical drudgery. But in the compilation of 
George Bannatyne's manuscript there are particulars 
which rivet our attention on the writer, and raise him 
from a humble copyist into a national Ijenefactor. 

"Bannatyne's manuscript is in a folio form, 
containing upwards of Soo pages, very neatly and 
closely written, and designed, as has been sup- 
posed, to lie sent to the press. The lal^our of com- 
piling so rich a collection was undertaken by the 
author during the time of pestilence, in the year 
1568, when the dread of infecti(jn compelled men to 
fursake their usual cm])loyments, whicli could not be 
conducted without admitting tlie ordinary promis- 
cuous intercour>c between man and his kindred men. 

"In this dreadful ])eriod, when hundreds, finding 
themselves surrounded by flanger and death, re- 
nounced all care save that of selfi.-,h precaution for 
their own safety, and all thoughts save ai)]irehensions 



1 In a Afemair n/ (irnrt^f Jianiut/yiie, by Sir Walter Srntt 
prefixed to a collectian of vtcmnral-ilia reganlinj; hini, whicli 
fi.-is been printefl fir the liann.ityne Chib, it is supposed that 
he w.is not early en^.-iged in bnsiness. l!ut tliis supposition 
seems only to rest on an uncertain inference from a passage 
in George Hannatyne's .l/cwrtr/r;// />«//<•, where it i~ mentioned 
that Katharine Tailliefer. at her death in 1570, left behind 
her eleven children, of whom ci};lit were as yet " unnut to 
proffeit." On a careful inspection of the family notii:es in this 
Mi-mnrinll liuik, it appears as likely that George himself was 
one r-^i those already "put to proffeit" as otherwise, more 
especially considering that he was tlien twenty-five years of 



of infection, George Bannatyne had the courageous 
energy to form and execute the plan of saving the 
literature of a whole nation; and, undisturbed by the 
universal mourning for the dead, and general fears 
of the living, to devote himself to the task of collect- 
ing and recording the trium]5hs of human genius;^ 
thus, amid the wreck of all that was mortal, employ- 
ing himself in preserving the lays by which immor- 
tality is at once given to others, and obtained for the 
writer himself His task, he informs us, had its 
difficulties; for he complains that he had, even in his 
time, to contend with the disadvantage of copies old, 
maimed, and mutilated, and which long before our 
day must, but for this faithful transcriber, have 
perished entirely. The very labour of jirocuring 
the originals of the works which he transcribed must 
have been attended' with much trouble and some 
risk, at a time when all the usual intercourse of life 
was suspended; and when we can conceive that even 
so simple a circumstance as the borrowing and lend- 
ing a book of ballads was accompanied with some 
doubt and apprehension, and that probably the sus- 
pected volume was subjected to fumigation and the 

precautions used in quarantine.^ 

* * * « « 

" In the reign of James IV. and V. the fine arts, 
as they awakened in other countries, made some 
progress in Scotland also. Architecture and music 
were encouraged by both of those accomplished 
sovereigns; and poetry, above all, seems to have been 
highly valued at the Scottish court. The King of 
Scotland, who, in point of power, seems to have been 
little more than the first baron of his kingdom, held 
a free and merry court, in which poetry and satire 
seem to have had unlimited range, even where their 
shafts glanced on royalty itself. The consequence 
of this general encouragement was the production of 
much poetry of various kinds, and concerning various 
persons, which the narrow exertions of the vScottish 
press could not convey to the j^ublic, or which, if 
printed at all, existed only in limited editions, which 
soon sunk to the rarity of manuscripts. There was 
therefore an ample mine out of which Bannatyne 
made his compilation, with the intention, doubtless, 
of putting the lays of the ' makers' out of the reach of 
oblivion by subjecting the collection to the press. 
But the bloody wars of Queen Mary's time^ made 
that no period for literary adventure; and the ten- 
dency of the subsequent age to ]iolemical discussion 
discouraged lighter and gayer studies. There is, 
therefore, little doubt, that had Bannatyne lived 
later than he did, or had he been a man of less taste 
in selecting his materials, a great ])io]"iort:on of the 
poeti-y contained in his volume must have been lost 
to jiostcrity; and, if the stock of iKn-thern literature 
had been diminished only by the loss of such of 1 )un- 
bar's pieces as Bannatyne's manuscript contains, the 
damage to posterity woukl have been infinite." 

The pestilence which caused Bannatyne to go into 
retirement commenced at Ivlinburgh upon the 8th 
of September, 1568, being introduced by a merchant 



2 Witli deference to .Sir Walter, we would suj;,i;est that th.o 
suspicion inider which books are always lield at a time of jics- 
tilence as .a me.ans of conveying the infection, gives great 
reason to suppose that George Bannatyne had jireviously col- 
lected his original manuscripts, and only took this opportunity 
of transcribing them. 'J'he writing of 800 folio pages in the 
careful and iruricate style of caligraphy then practised, apjiears 
a sufficient t;isk in itself fir three months, without supposing 
that any part of the time was spent in collecling mamiscripls. 
And hence we see the greater reason for supposing that a large 
part of the attention of (Jeorge Bannatyne before his twenty- 
third year w.-w devoted to .Scottish poetry. 

■' The accomplished writer should rather h.ive said, the 
minority of James VI., whose reign had commenced before the 
manuscrijit vva.-> written. 



GEORGE BANNATYNE JOHN BARBOUR. 



8i 



of the name of Dalgleish. We have, however, no 
evidence to prove that Bannatyne resideci at this 
time in the capital. We know, from his own informa- 
tion, that lie wrote his manuscript during the sui>se- 
qucnt months of October, November, and December; 
which mij^ht ahnost seem to imply that he had lived 
in some other town, to which the pestilence only ex- 
tended at the end of the month in which it appeared 
in Edinburgh. Leaving this in uncertainty, it is not 
perhaps too much to suppose that he might have 
adopted this means of spending his time of seclu- 
sion from the fictitious example held out by Boccacio, 
who represents the tales of his Decameron as having 
been told for mutual amusement by a company of 
persons who had retired to the country to escai)e the 
plague. A person so eminently acquainted with the 
poetry of his own country might well be familiar 
with the kindred work of that illustrious Italian. 

The few remaining facts of George Bannatyne's 
life, which have been gathered up by the industry of 
Sir Walter .Scott, may be briefly related. \\\ 1572 
he was provided with a tenement in the town of 
Leith, by a gift from his father. This would seem 
to imply that he was henceforward, at least, engaged 
in business, and resided either in Edinburgh or at its 
neighbouring port. It was not, however, till the 
27th of October, 1587, that, being then in his forty- 
third year, he was ailmitted in due and competent 
form to the privileges of a merchant and guild-brother 
of the city of Edinburgh. "We have no means of 
knowing what branch of traffic George Bannatyne 
chiefly exercised; it is probable that, as usual in 
a Scottish burgh, his commerce was general and 
miscellaneous. We have reason to know that it was 
successful, as we find him in a 'it^vt years possessed 
of a consideratjle capital, the time being considered, 
which he employed to advantage in various money- 
lending transactions. It must not be forgot that the 
penal laws of the Catholic period pronounced all 
direct taking of interest upon money to be usurious 
and illegal. These denunciations did not decrease 
the desire of the wealthy to derive some profit from 
their capital, or diminish the necessity of the embar- 
rassed land-holder who wished to borrow money. 
The mutual interest of the parties suggested various 
evasions of the law, of which the most common was, 
that the capitalist advanced to his debtor the sum 
wanted, as the price of a corresponding annuity, 
payable out of the lands and tenements of the 
debtor, which annuity was rendered redeemaV)le upon 
the said debtor repaying the sum advanced. Tlie 
moneyed man of those days, therefore, imitated the 
conduct imputed to the Jewish patriarch by Shylock. 
They did not take 

— ^interest — not as you would say 
Directly interest, 

Irat tlicy retained payment of an annuity as long as 
the debtor retained the use of their ca'pit.il, which 
came to much the same thing. A species of trans- 
action wa> contrived, as affording a convenient mode 
of securing the lender's money. Our researches have 
discovered that tieorge Bannatyne had sufficient fund.-, 
to enter into various transactions of this kind in the 
capacity of lender; and. as we have no reason to 
suppose that he profited unfairly by the necc-sities 
of the other party, he cannot be' blamed for having 
recour-.e to the onlinary exjiedients to avoid tlie 
penalty of an al)surd law, an<i accomplish a fair trans- 
action, ilictated by nnitual ex;iediencv." 

Bannatyne, about the same time that he became 
a burgess ot Edinburgh, appears to have married his 
spouse, Isobel Mawclian [njiparently identical witli 
the modern name Maii^haii\, who was the relict of 

VOL. I. 



Bailie William Nisbctt, and must have been about 
forty years of age at the time of her second nuptials, 
supposing 1586 to be the date of that event, which 
is only probable from the succeeding year having 
produced her first child by I5annatyne. ' This child 
was a daughter, by name Janet or Jonet; she was 
born on the 3d of May, 1587. A son, James, bom 
on the 6th of September, 15S9, and who died young, 
completes the sum of Bannatyne's family. The father 
of liannatyne died in the year 1 583, and was suc- 
ceeded in his estate of Xewtyle by his eldest living 
son, Thomas, who became one of the Lords of Ses- 
sion by that designation— an appointment which 
forms an additional voucher for the general respecta- 
bility of the family. George Bannatyne was, on the 
27th of August, 1603, dei)rived of his affectionate 
helpmate, Isobel Mawchan, at the age of fifty-seven. 
She had lived, according to her husband's Manoriall, 
"a godly, honourable, and virtuous life; was a wise, 
honest, and true matron, and departed in the Lord 
in a peaceful and godly manner." 

George Bannatyne himself deceased previous to 
the year 1608, leaving only one child, Janet, who 
had, in 1603, been married to George Eoulis of 
Woodhall and Ravelstone, second S(jn of James 
Eoulis of Colingtoun. His valuable collection of 
Scottish poetry was preserved in his daughter's 
family till 1712, when his great-grandson, William 
Eoulis of Woodhall, bestowed it upon the Hon<jur- 
able William Carmichael of Skirling, advocate, 
brother to the Earl of Ilyndford, a gentleman who 
appears to have had an eminent taste for such monu- 
ments of antiquity. While in the possession of Mr. 
Carmichael it was borrowed by Allan Ramsay, who 
selected from its pages the materials of his jiopular 
collection styled The Evergreen. Lord Hailes, in 
1 77°) published a second and more correct selection 
from the Bannatyne manuscript; and the venerable 
tome was, in 1772, by the liberality of John, third Earl 
of Hyndford, deposited in the Advocates' Library at 
Edinburgh, where it still remains. 

We have already alluded to George Bannatyne as 
a poet: but, to tell the truth, his verses display little, 
in thought or imagery, that could be expected to 
interest the present generation; neither was he per- 
haps a versifier of great repute, even in his own time. 

It only remains to be mentioned that the name of 
George Bannatyne has been approjiriately adojited 
by a company of .Scottish literary antiquaries, inter- 
ested, like him, in the j^reservation of such curious 
memorials of the taste of past ages, as well as -uch 
monuments of history as might otherwise run the 
hazard of total perdition. 

BARBOUR, John, a name of which Scotland hr.s 
iu>[ occa.-ion to t)e proud, was Archdeacon of Aber- 
deen in the later part of the fourteenth century. Th.ere 
has been much idle controversy as to the date of his 
birth; while all that is known witli historic cerfainiy 
may be related in a single sentence. -As he was an 
archdeacon in 1357, and as, by the canon law, no 
man without a dispensation can attain tl'i.-.t rai.lc 
under the age of twenty-five, he was jirobably bn;;i 
betore the \ear 1332. 

.\s to his jiarentage or birthplace \\e liave ni.'y 
similar conjectures. Besides the j.rol lability of li;i 
having been a native of the di-trict in w iiieh lie after- 
wards obtained high clerical rank, it can lie^l"."-.\n 
that there were individuals of his name in aiv: as '•-■.i 
the town of Aberdeen, any one of whom nii.;I;t l.ave 
Ivjen his father. The name, \\liich rq i'i:i:- :•< h.'.%e 
been one of tl;af numerous cLtsS derive-l !r. 'ir. trr.'ie-, 
is also f )unil in ]XT-'.'ns of tl.e sariV er.\ \\\.-^ w^re 
coimected witii the soiitljcrn 1 arto ol .■ic'./.l.-.r, :. 



82 



JOHN BARBOUR. 



In attempting the biography of an individual who 
lived four or five centuries ago, and whose life was 
commemorated by no contemporar)', all that can be 
expected is a few unconnected, and perhaps not very 
interesting, facts. It is already established that Bar- 
bour, in 1357, was archdeacon of the cathedral of 
Aberdeen, and fulfilled a high trust imposed upon 
him by his bishop. It is equally ascertained that, in 
the same year, he travelled, with three scholars in his 
company, to Oxford, for purposes connected wiih 
study. A safe-contluct granted to him by Edward 
III., August 23d, at the request of David II., con- 
veys this information in the following terms: " l''i'/tt- 
endo, cum trihiis scltolarihns in comitiva sua, in iri^- 
num nostrum Angliir, causa studcndi in universita/e 
OxoniiC et ibidem actus sclwlasticos cxcrccndo, morando, 
exindc in Scoliam ad propria rcdcundo.'" It might 
have been supposed that Barliour only officiated in 
this expedition as tutor to the three scholars; but that 
he was himself bent on study at tlic university is 
proved by a second safe-conduct, granted l:iy tlie same 
monarch, November 6th, 1364, in tlie following 
terms: "To Master John Barbour, Archdeacon of 
Aberdeen, with four knights [ccjuitcs], coming from 
Scotland, by land or sea, into England, to study at 
Oxford, or elsewhere, as /le may think proper." As 
also from a tliird, bearing date N'ovember 30th, 1368: 
"To Master John Barbour, with two valets and two 
horses, to come into England and travel through the 
same, to the other dominions of the king, versus 
Franciam, causa studiendi, and of returning again." 
It would thus appear that Barbour, even after that 
he had attained a high ecclesiastical dignity, found it 
agreeal)!e or necessary to spend several winters at 
Oxford in study. When we recollect that at this 
time there was no university in Scotland, and that 
a man of such literary habits as Barljour could not 
fail to find himself at a loss even for the use of 
a library in his native country, we are not to wonder 
at his occasional pilgrimages to tlie illustrious shrine 
of learning on the banks of the Isis. On the i6th 
of October, 1635, he received another safe-conduct 
from Edward III., permitting him "to come into 
England and travel tin-oughout tliat kingdom, cum 
sex sociis suis equitihus, usque Sanctum DionisiTim;" 
i.e. witli six knights in company, to St. Dennis in 
France. Such slight notices suggest curious and 
interesting views of the manners of that early time. 
We are to understand from them that Barbour always 
travelled in a very dignified manner, being sometimes 
attended by four knights and sometimes by no fewer 
than six, or at least by two mounted servants. A 
man accustomed to such state might be the better 
able to compose a chivalrous epic like The Bruce. 

There is no other authentic document regarding 
Barbour till the year 1373, when his name appears 
in the list of auditors of cxchefjuer for that year, 
being then descriljcd as '^clcricus probalionis domus 
domini nostri reikis" i.e. apparently — auditor of the 
comptroller's accounts for the royal household. 
This, however, is loo obscure and solitary an au- 
thority to enable us to conclude that he bore an office 
under the king. Hume of (jodscroft, s]jeaking of 
"the Bruce's book," says: ".-Xs I am informed, the 
book was penned by a man of good knowledge and 
learning, named Master John Barbour, Arcluleacon 
of Aberdeene, for which work he had a yearly pen- 
sion out of tlic exchequer during his life, which he 
gave to the hospitall of that towne, and to which it 
is allowed and j)aid still in our daycs."' This fact, 
that a pension was given him for writing his book, 
is authenticated Ijy an unquestionable document. In 



1 History r/t/u: D^:/i,!as:cs. 



the Rotuli Ballivcrum Burgi de Aherdonia for 1471, 
the entry of the discharge for this royal donation 
bears that it was expressly given "for the compila- 
tion of the Book of the Deeds of King Robert the 
First,'''' referring to a prior statement of this circum- 
stance in the more ancient rolls: — "Et decano et 
cajiitulo Abirdonensi percipienti annuatim viginti 
solidos pro anniversario quondam Magistri Johannis 
Barberi, pro compilatione libri gestorum Regis 
Roberti primi, ut patet in antiquis Rotulis de anno 
Compoti, XX. s." The first notice we have of 
Barbour receiving a pension is dated February i8th, 
139O; and although this period was only al)out two 
months before the death of Robert the Second, it 
appears from the rolls that to that monarch the poet 
was indebted for the favour. In the roll for April 
26th, 1398, this language occurs:— "Quam recolendie 
memorie quondam dominus Robertus secundus, rex 
Scottonim, dedit, concessit, et carta sua confirmavit 
quondam Johanni Barbere archediacono Aber- 
donensi," &c. In the roll dated June 2d, 1424, the 
words are these: — "Decano et capitulo ecclesia' 
cathedralis Aberdonensis percipientibus annuatim 
viginti solidos de firmis dicti burgi pro anniversario 
quondam Magistri Johannis Barbar pro compilacione 
libri de gestis Regis Roberti Brwise, ex concessione 
Regis Roberti Secundi, in plenam solucionem dicte 
pensionis," &c. Barbour's pension consisted of ;^lo 
Scots from the customs of Aberdeen, and of 20 shil- 
lings from the rents or burrow-mails of the same 
city. The first sum was limited to "the life of 
Barbour;" the other to "his assignees whomsoever, 
although he should have assigned it in the way of 
mortification." Hume of Godscroft and others are 
in a mistake in supposing that he appropriated this 
sum to an hospital, for it appears from the accounts 
of the great chamberlain that he left it to the chapter 
of the cathedral church of Aberdeen, for the express 
purpose of having mass said for his soul annually 
after his decease. Barbour's anniversary, it is sup- 
posed, continued till the Reformation; and then the 
sum allowed for it reverted to the crown. 

All that is further known of Barbour is, that he 
died towards the close of 1395. This appears from 
the chartulary of Aljerdeen, and it is the last year 
in which the payment of his pension of ;i^lo stands 
on the record. 

The Brtice, which Barbour himself informs us 
he wrote in the year 1375, is a metrical history of 
Robert I. — his exertions and achievements for 
the recovery of the indejiendence of .Scotland, and 
the principal transactions of his reign. As Barbour- 
flourished in the age immediately following that of 
his hero, he must have enjoyed the advantage of 
hearing from eye-witnesses narratives of the war of 
liberty. Asa history, his work is of good authority; 
he himself boasts of its soothfast ness ; and the simj)le 
and straightforward way in which the story is told 
goes to indicate its general veracity. Although, 
however, the object of the author was mainly to give 
a soothfast history of the life and transactions of 
Robert the Bruce, the work is far from being desti- 
tute of poetical feeling or rliythmical sweetness and 
harmony. The lofty sentiments and vivid descri]>- 
tions with which it alwunds, prove the author to 
have been fitted by feeling and by princi])Ie, as well 
as by situation, forthc t.askwhichhe undertook. 1 lis 
genius has lent truth all the cliarms that are usually 
supposed to belong to fiction. The horrors of war 
are softened by strokes of tenderness that make us 
equally in love with the hero and the poet. In 
battle-])ainting Barbour is eminent: the battle ',r 
Bannockburn is described with a minuteness, spini, 
and fervency, worthy of the day. 



JOHN BARBOUR ALEXANDER BARCLAY. 



S5 



The apostrophe to freedom, after the painful de- 
scription of the slavery to which Scotland was re- 
<luccd by Edward, is in a style of poetical feeling 
very uncommon in that and many subsequent ages, 
and has been quoted with high praise by the most 
distinguished Scottish historians and critics: — 



"A! fredome is a nobill thing! 
Kredomc mayse man to haiff liking ! 
Kredome all solace to man giffis: 
He levys at ese that frely levys ! 
A noble hart mav haiff nane esc, 
Na ellys nocht that may him plese, 
Gyff fredome failythe: for fre liking 
Is yearnyt our all othir thing 
Na he, that ay base levyt fre, 
May nocht knaw weill the propyrte. 
The angyr, na the wrechyt dome, 
That is cowplyt to foiilc thyrldome. 
Bot gyff he had assayit it. 
Than all pcrqucr he suld it wyt; 
And suld think fredome mar to pr>'se 
Than all the gold in warld that is."' — (Book i. 1. 223,' 



"Barbour," says an eminent critic in Scottish 
poetical literature, "was evidently skilled in sucli 
branches of knowledge as were then cultivated, and 
liis learning was so well regulated as to conduce to 
the real improvement of his mind; the liberality of 
his views and the humanity of his sentiments appear 
occasionally to have been unconfined by the narrow 
boundaries of his own age. He has drawn various 
illustrations from ancient history, and from the 
stories of romance, but has rarely displayed his erudi- 
tion by decking his verses with the names of ancient 
authors: the distichs of Cato,- and the spurious pro- 
ductions of Dares Phrygius and Dictys Cretensis, 
are the only profane books to which he formally re- 
fers. He has borrowed more than one illustration 
from Statius, who was the favourite classic of those 
times, and who likewise appears to have been tlie 
favourite of Barbour: the more chaste and elegant 
style of Virgil and Horace were not so well adapted 
to the prevalent taste as the strained thoughts and 
gorgeous diction of Statins and Claudian. Tiie 
manner in which he has incidentally discussed tlie 
subject of astrolog)' and necromancy may be speci- 
fied as not a little creditable to his good sense. It 
is well known that tliese branches of divination were 
assiduously cultivated during the ages of intellectual 
darkness. The absurdity of astrology and necro- 
mancy he has not openly attempted to expose; for as 
the opinions of the many, however unfounded in 
reason, must not be too rashly stigmatized, this might 
have been too bold and decided a step. Of tlie 
possil)ility of predicting events he speaks with the 
caution of a philosopher; but the following passage 



1 Some readers may perhaps arrive at the sense of this fine 
pT^sigo m.>re readily through the medium of the following 
P-irapiir.Lse:— 

".•\h, Freedom is a noble thing, 
And can to life a relish bring. 
Freedom all solace to man gives; 
He lives at case that freely lives. 
A noble he.irt may h.ave no ease. 
Nor aught lw;ide that may it please, 
If frec'l'im fiil — Tt 'tis the choice, 
More than the chosen, man enjoys. 
Ah, he that ne'er yet lived in thrall. 
Knows not the we.iry pains which gall 
The limb-;, the soul, of him who 'pl.iius 
In slavery's r>ul and f^-^tering chains; 
If these he knew, I ween richt soon 
He woulil seek Inck the precious boon 
(^f freedom, which he then would pri7C 
More than all wealth beneath the skies." 



may be considered as a sufficient indication of his 
deliberate sentiments: — 

'And sen thai ar in sic wenyng, 
For owtyne certante off witting, 
Me think quha sayis he knawi>, thingis 
To cum, he makys great gabiiigis." 

To form such an estimate required a mind capable 
of resisting a strong torrent of prejudice; nor is it 
superfluous to remark, that in an age of much higher 
refinement, Dryden suffered himself to be deluded 
by the jirognostications of judicial astrology. It was 
not, however, to be expected that Barbour should on 
every occasion evince a decided superiority to the 
general spirit of the age to which he belonged. His 
terrible imprecation on the person who betrayed Sir 
Christopher Seton, 'In hell condamjmyt mot he 
be!' ought not to have been uttered by a Christian 
priest. His detestation of the treacherous and cruel 
King Edward induced him to lend a credulous ear 
to the report of his consulting an infernal spirit. The 
misfortunes which attended Bruce at almost ever)- step 
of his early progress he attributes to his sacrilegious 
act of slaying Comyn at the high altar. He sup- 
])oses that the women and children who assisted in 
supplying the brave defenders of Berwick with arrows 
and stones were protected from injury by a miracu- 
lous interposition. Such instances of superstition 
or uncharitable zeal are not to be viewed as marking 
the individual: gross superstition, with its usual 
concomitants, was the general spirit of the time: and 
the deviations from the ordinary track are to be 
traced in examples of liberal feeling or enlightened 
judgment."'' 

One further quotation from the Scottish contem- 
porary and rival of Chaucer may perhaps be admitted 
by the reader: it gives one of the slight and minute 
stories with which the poet fills up his narrative: — 

" The king has hard a woman crj-; 
He askyt quhat that wes in hy. 
'It is the lavndar, .Schyr,' said ane, 
'That her ciiild-ill rycht now has tane, 
'And mon leve now behind ws her; 
'Tharfor scho makys yone iwill cher.' 
The king said, ' Certis it w.ar pite 
'That scho in that poynt left suld be; 
'For certis I trow th.ar is na man 
'That be ne will rew a woman than,' 
Hiss ost all th.ar arestyt he. 
And gert a tent sone stentit be. 
And gert hyr gang in hastily. 
And othyr wenieu to be hyr Iiy, 
Quhill scho wes dclier, he bad. 
And syne furth on his wayis raid: 
And hou' scho furth sidd cary it 1 e, 
Or euir he furth fur, ordanyt lie. 
'this wes a full grct curt.asy, 
'J'hat swilk a king, and sa mighty. 
Cert his men duell on this maner 
Hot for a pouir lauender." 

No one can fail to remark that, while the incident is 
in the highest degree honourable to r)ruce, ^howing 
that the gentle heart may still be known by gentle 
deed, so also is Barbour entitled to the crei-Ht C't 
humane feelings, from the way in whicli he had de- 
tailed and commentetl ujion the transaction. 

Barbour was the author of another considerabA' 
work, which has unfortunately pcri-hed. Thi> w.-.- 
a chronicle of Scottish history, jirubably in tl-.e ni.ir.- 
! ner of that by Andrew Winton. 

BARCLAY. Ai.r.XANnr.K. a cli:-ting'.;i>hed writer 
of the Kngli>h tongue at tlic beginning nf •I;e -;\tee;'.'.'i 
century, is known to have Ix-cn a ii:itive ol Sc<'lLir.(l_ 
only bv verv obsciire evi^Icnce. He sj e;;; Mine ot 



And Catone siyi^ us in '. 
I'o fenyhe foly quhile is 



■/•'•<• Brurr. 



Ar 



.■!■• ••!;. r' 



Ir 



84 



JOHN BARCLAY. 



his earliest years at Croydon, in Surrey, and it is 
conjectured that he received his education at one of 
the English universities. In the year 1508 lie was 
a prebendary of the collegiate church of St. Mary at 
Ottery, in Devonshire. He was afterwards a monk, 
first of the order of St. Benedict at Ely, and latterly 
of the order of St. Francis at Canterbury. While in 
this situation, and having the degree of Doctor of 
Divinity, he published an English translation of the 
Mirroar of Good Manners (a treatise compiled in 
Latin by Dominyke Mancyn), for the use of the " juvent 
of England." After the Reformation Barclay ac- 
cepted a ministerial charge in the Protestant church, 
as vicar of Much-Badew in Essex. In 1546 lie was 
vacar of Wokey in Somersetshire, and in 1552 he 
was presented by the dean and chapter of London 
to the rectory of Allhallows in I-ombard Street. 
Having reached an advanced age, he died in June 
this year, at Croydon in Surrey, where he was buried. 
Barclay published a great number of books, 
original and translated, and is allowed by the most 
intelligent inquirers into early English literature to 
have done more for the improvement of the language 
than any of his contemporaries. Ills chief poetical 
work is The Ship of Fooles, which was written in 
imitation of a German work entitled. Das Narren 
Schiff, published in 1494. The Ship of Fooles, 
which was first printed in I509> describes a vessel 
laden with all sorts of absurd persons, though there 
seems to have been no end in view but to bring 
them into one place, so that they might be described, 
as the beasts were brought before Adam in order to 
be named. We shall transcribe one passage from 
this work, as a specimen of the English style of 
Barclay: it is a curious contemporary character of 
King James IV. of Scotland. 

"And, ye Christen princes, whosoever ye be, 
If ye be destitute of a noble captayne, 

Take James of Scotland for his audacitie 
And proved manhode, if ye will laude attaine : 
Let him have the forwarde : have ye no disdayne 

Nor indignation ; for never king was borne 

That of ought of waure can shaw the uncorne. 

For if that once he take the speare in hand 
Agaynst these Turkes strongly with it to ride, 

None shall Vje able his stroke for to withstande 
Nor before his face so hardy to abide. 
Vet this his manhode increaseth not his pride ; 

But ever sheweth meeknes and humilitie, 

In worde or dede to hye and lowe degree." 

Barclay also made a translation of Sallust's History 
of the yn^urthine War, which was puljlishedin 1557, 
five years after his death, and is one of the earliest 
specimens of English translation from the classics. 

BARCLAY, John, A.M., was the founder of a 
religi<jus sect in Scotland, generally named Bercans, 
but sometimes called, from the name of tliis in- 
dividual, Barclayans. The former title derived its 
origin from the habit of Mr. Barclay, in always 
making an appeal to the Scriptures, in vindication 
of any doctrine he advanced from the jnilpit or 
which was contained in his writings. Tlie jierfec- 
tion of the .Scriptures, or of the Book of divine 
;evelation, was the fundamental article of his system; 
at least this was what he liimself publicly declared 
upon all occasions, and tlie same sentiments are still 
entertained by liis followers. In \z. xvii. 10 the 
Bereans are thus mentioned, "These were more 
noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they 
received the word with all readiness of mind, and 
searched the Scriptures daily, whether those things 
were so." These words were fref|uently quoted by 
Mr. Barclay. It ought to be observed, however, 
that originally it was not a name of reproach in- 



vented by the malevolent part of the public, with 
the design of holding up Mr. Barclay and his 
associates to contempt, but was voluntarily assumed 
by them, to distinguish them from other sects of 
professed Christians. 

Mr. Barclay was born in 1734. His father, Mr. 
Ludovic Barclay, was a farmer in the parish of 
Muthill, in the county of Perth. Being at an early 
age designed by his parents for the church, he was 
sent to school, and received the best education 
which that part of the country could afford. He 
was afterwards sent by his father to St. Andrews, 
where he regularly attended the literary and philo- 
sophical classes, and took the degree of A.M. At 
the commencement of the subsequent session, he 
entered the New Divinity or St. Mary's College, 
a seminary in which theology alone is taught. 
Nothing very particular occurred during his attend- 
ance at the hall, as it is generally called. He was 
uniformly regular in his private conduct, and though 
constitutionally of very impetuous passions and a 
fervid imagination, at no time of his life was he ever 
seduced into the practice of what was immoral or 
vicious. While he attended the lectures on divinity, 
the university of St. Andrews, and indeed the Church 
of Scotland in general, were placed in a very un- 
pleasant situation, by the agitation of a question 
which originated with Dr. Archil:)ald Campbell, 
professor of church history in St Mary's College. 
He maintained "that the knowledge of the exist- 
ence of God was derived from revelation, not from 
nature." This was long reckoned one of the errors 
of Socinus, and no one in Scotland, before Dr. 
Campbell's time, had ever disputed the opinion that 
was generally current, and consequently esteemed 
orthodox. He published his sentiments without the 
least reserve, and was equally ready to enter upon 
a vindication of them. He considered his view of 
the subject as a foundation necessary to be laid in 
order to demonstrate the necessity of revelation. 
A whole host of opponents volunteered against 
such dangerous sentiments; innumerable pamphlets 
rapidly made their appearance, and tlie hue and cry 
was so loud, that the ecclesiastical courts thought 
that they could no longer remain silent. Dr. 
Campbell was publicly ])rosecuted on account of his 
heretical opinions, but after long litigation the matter 
was compromised, and the only effect it produced 
was, that the students at St. Andrews in general 
became more zealous defenders of the doctor's 
system, though they durst not avow it so openly. 
Among others, Mr. Barclay had warmly espoused 
Dr. Campbell's system, and long before he left 
college he was noted as one of his most open and 
avowed partizans. These principles he never de- 
serted, and in his view of Christianity it formed an 
important part of the system of revealed truth. It 
must not be imagined, however, that Mr. Barclay 
slavishly followed or adojited all Dr. Campbell's 
sentiments. Thougli tliey were both agreed that 
a knowledge of the true God \\as derived from 
revelation and not from nature, yet they differed 
ujion ahnost every other point of systematic divinity. 
^Ir. Barclay was early, and continued through lile 
to be a liigh predcstinarian, or what is technically 
denominated a supralapsarian, while Dr. Campbell, 
if one may draw an inference from some of his illus- 
trations, leaned to Arminianism, and doubtless was 
not a decided Calvinist. 

Mr. Barclay, having delivered the jirescribed dis- 
courses, now directed his views to obtain license as 
a ]ireacher in the Establishment, and having delivered 
the usual series of exercises witli the entire a])proba- 
tion of his judges, he was, on the 27th September, 



JOHN BARCLAY. 



Sk 



1759, licensed by the presbytery of Auchterarder. 
lie was not long without employment. Mr. Jobson, 
then minister of Errol, near Perth, required an assis- 
tant, and Mr. Barclay from his popularity as a 
preacher easily obtained this situation. Here he 
remained for three or four years, until a rupture with 
his principal obliged him to leave it. ^Ir. Jobson 
was what may be called of the old school. He 
warmly espoused (as a great many clergymen of the 
Church of Scotland in those days did) the system 
of the Marrrw of Modern Divinity, a book written 
by Edward Fisher, an English dissenter, about the 
middle of the seventeenth century, and republished 
in Scotland with notes by the celebrated Mr. Thomas 
Boston of Ettrick. For many years this book occa- 
sioned a most serious commotion in the Church of 
Scotland, which is generally called "the Afarr(nu 
controversy." It was, indeed, the remote cause of 
that great division, which has since been styled the 
Secession. But there was another cause for the 
widening of this unfortunate breach. The well- 
known Mr. John Glass, minister of Tealing, near 
Dundee, had published, in 1727, a work entitled 
The Testimony of the King of Martyrs. With the 
exception of the Cameronians, this gentleman was 
the first dissenter from the Church of Scotland since 
the Revolution, and it is worthy of remark that the 
founders of the principal sects were all originally 
cast out of the church. Mr. Glass was an admirer 
of the writings of the most celebrated English In- 
dependents (of Dr. John Owen in particular), and of 
their form of church-government. Mr. Barclay, 
who was no Independent, heartily approved of many 
of his sentiments respecting the doctrines of the 
gospel, and as decidedly disapproved of others. He 
had a system of his own, and agreed with none of 
the parties; but this, if possible, rendered him more 
obnoxious to Mr. Jobson. Mucli altercation took 
place between them in private. Mr. Barclay publicly 
declared his sentiments from the pulpit, Mr. Jobson 
did the same in defence of himself, so that a rupture 
became unavoidable. 

About the time of Mr. Barclay's leaving Errol, 
Mr. Anthony Dow, minister of Fettercairn, in the 
presbytery of Fordoun, found himself unfit for the 
full discharge of his duties. He desired his son, the 
Rev. David Dow, then minister of the parish of 
Dron, in the presbytery of Perth, to use his endeavour 
to procure him an assistant. Mr. Dow, who, we 
believe, was a fellow-student of Mr. Barclay at St. 
Andrews, and perfectly well acquainted with his 
talents and character, and the cause of his leaving 
Errol, immediately made offer to him of being 
assistant to his fither. This he accepted, and he 
commenced his labours in the beginning of June, 
1763. What were Mr. Anthony Dow's peculiar 
theological sentiments we do not know, but those of 
Mr. David Dow were not very different from Mr. 
Barclay's. Here he remained for nine years, which 
he often declared to have been the most happy, and 
considered to have been the most useful, period' of his 
life. 

Mr. Barclay was of a fair, and in his youth of 
a very florid, complexion. He then looked' younger 
tlian he really was. The people of Fettercairn were 
at first greatly prejudiced against him on account of 
his youthful appearance. But this was soon forgotten. 
His fervid manner, in prayer especially, and at 
dilTerent parts of almost every sermon, rivetted the 
atteition and impressed the minds of his audience 
to such a degree, that it was almost impossible to 
lose the memory of it. His jiopuiarity as a preacher 
became so great at Fettercairn, that anything of the 
like kind is seldom to be met with in tlie historj- of 



the Church of Scotland. The parish church, being 
an old-fashioned building, had rafters across; these 
were crowded with hearers; — the sashes of the 
windowswere taken out toaccommodate thcmultitude 
who could not gain admittance. During the whole 
period of his settlement at Fettercairn, he had 
regidar hearers who flocked to him from ten or 
twelve of the neighbouring parishes. If an opinion 
could be formed of what his manner had been in his 
youth, and at his prime, from what it was a year or 
two before he died, it must have l>een vehement, 
passionate, and impetuous to an uncommon degree. 
During his residence at Fettercairn he did not 
confine his labours to his public ministrations in 
the pulpit, but visited from house to house, was the 
friend and adviser of all who were at the head of a 
family, and entered warmly into whatever regarded 
their interests. He showed the most marked atten- 
tion to children and to the young; and when any of 
the household were seized with sickness or disease, he 
spared no pains in giving tokens of his sympathy, 
and administered consolation to the afflicted. He 
was very assiduous in discharging those necessary 
and important duties which he thought were pecu- 
liarly incumbent upon a country clerg)man. Such 
long-continued and uninterrupted exertions were 
accompanied with the most happy effects. A taste 
for religious knowledge, or what is the same, the 
reading and study of the Bible, began to prevail to 
a great extent; the morals of the people were im- 
proved, and temperance, sobriety, and regularity of 
behaviour sensibly discovered themselves through- 
out all ranks. 

Mr. Barclay had a most luxuriant fancy, a great 
liking for poetr\-, and possessed consideral:ile facility 
of versification. His taste, however, was far from 
being correct or chaste, and his imagination was 
little under the management of a sound judgment. 
Besides his works in prose, he published a great 
many thousand verses on religious subjects. He 
had composed a paraphrase of the whole book 
of Psalms, part of which was published in 1766. 
To this was prefixed, A Dissertation on the best 
Means of Interpreting that Portion of the Canon of 
Scripture. His views upon this subject were pecu- 
liar. He was of opinion that, in all the psalms 
which are in the first person, the speaker is Christ, 
and not David nor any other mere man, and that 
the other psalms describe the situation of the church 
of God, sometimes in prosperity, sometimes in ad- 
versity, and finally triumphing over all its enemies. 
This essay is characterized by uncommon vigour of 
expression, yet in some places with considerable 
acrimony. The presbyter)^ of Fordoun took great 
offence at this publication, and summoned Mr. 
Barclay to appear at their bar. He did so, nnd 
defended himself with spirit and intrepidity. His 
opinions were not contrary to any doctrine contained 
in the Confession of Faith, so that he could not even 
be censured by them. Mr. Barclay, who being 
naturally of a frank, open, and ingenuous disposition, 
had no idea of concealing his opinions, not only 
continued to preach the same doctrines whicli w ere 
esteemed heretical by the presbyten.-, but published 
them in a small work, entitled Kcjoiee r; errueie. . r 
Christ AH in Ail. This obstinacy, as they con- 
sidered it, irritated them to a very high (ie;^iee. 
They drew up a warning against tlie danj^erin;- •\--<c- 
trines that he prcachetl, ami ordered it to lie re.id 
publicly in the church of Fettercairn after -einvn. 
and before pronouncing the blessing, by ^ne oi ilie-r 
own members, expressly apjxiinted lor tb.at jnirjiosc, 
on a specified day, which was accordin-i^'ly done. 
Mr. Barclav viewed their conduct with intiitTerence 



86 



JOHN BARCLAY. 



mingled with contempt, and no effect of any kind 
resulted from the warning to the people of Fetter- 
cairn, who were unanimous in their approbation of 
Mr. Barclay's doctrine. He continued during Mr. 
Dow's lifetime to instruct the people of his parish, 
and conducted his weekly examinations to the great 
profit of those who gave attendance. 

In 1769 he published one of the largest of his 
treatises, entitletl IVitlunit Faith 'untltoiit God, or an 
Appeal to God concerning his o^vn Existence. This 
was a defence of similar sentiments respecting the 
evidence in favour of the existence of God, whicli 
were entertained by Dr. Campbell already mentioned. 
The illustrations are entirely Calvinistical. This essay 
is not very methodical. It contains, however, a great 
many acute observations, and sarcastic remarks 
upon the systems of those who have adopted the 
generally current notions respecting natural religion. 
In the course of the same year, 1769, he addressed 
a letter on the Eternal Generation of the Son 0/ God, 
to Messrs. Smith and Ferrier. These two gentle- 
men had been clergymen in the Church of Scotland. 
They published their reasons of separation from the 
Established church. They had adopted all the 
sentiments of Mr. Glass, who was a most strict In- 
dependent, and both of them died in the Glassite 
communion. Dr. Dalgliesh of Peebles had, about 
the time of their leaving the church, published a 
new theory respecting the sonship of Christ, and, 
what is not a little singiilar, it had the merit of 
originality, and had never before occurred to any 
theologian. He held the tri-personality of Deity, 
but denied the eternal Sonship of the second person 
of the Godhead, antl was of opinion that this Jiliation 
only took place when the divine nature was united 
to the human, in the person of Christ, Immanuel, 
God with us. Novel as this doctrine was, all the 
Scottish Independents, with a very few exce])tions, 
embraced it. The difference between Dalgliesh and 
the Arians consists in this, that the second person 
of the Trinity, according to him, is God, equal witli 
the Father; whilst the latter maintain, in a certain 
sense, his supreme exaltation, yet they consider him 
as subordinate to the Father. Mr. Barclay's letter 
states very clearly tlie scriptural arguments usually 
adduced in favour of the eternal generation of the 
Son of God. It is written with great moderation 
and in an excellent spirit. 

In 1 77 1 he published a letter, On the Assurance 
0/ Faith, addressed to a gentleman who was a mem- 
ber of Mr. Cudworth's congregation in London. 
Cudworth was the person who made a distinguished 
figure in defending the celebrated Mr. Hervey 
against the acrimonious attack of Mr. Robert 
Sandeman, who was a Glassite. Excepting in some 
peculiar fonns of expression, Cudworth's views of 
the assurance of faith did not materially differ from 
Mr. Barclay's. There ajipeared also in the same 
year A Letter on /'rarer, addressed to an Indepen- 
dent congregation in Scotland. 

The Rev. .Vnthony Dow, minister of Fettercaim, 
died in 1772. The presbytery of Fordoun seized 
this o|)portunity of gratifying their s])leen; they pro- 
hibited Mr. Barclay from preaching in the kirk of 
Fettercaim, and used all their influence to prevent 
him from being employed, not only within their 
bounds, which lie in what is called the Mearns, but 
they studied to defame him in all quarters. The 
clergy of the neighlxjuring district, that is, in Angus, 
were much more friendly. They were ready to ad- 
mit him into their pulpits, and he generally preached 
every Lord's-day, during the subsequent autumn, 
winter, and spring. Multitudes from all parts of 
the country crowded to hear him. The patronage 



of Fettercaim is in the gift of the crown. The 
parish almost unanimously favoured Mr. Barclay. 
They were not, however, permitted to have any 
choice, and the Rev. Robert Foote, then minister 
of Eskdale Muir, was presented. At the modera- 
tion of the call, only three signed in favour of Mr. 
Foote. The parishioners appealed to the synod, 
and from the synod to the General Assembly, who 
ordered Mr. Foote to be inducted. The presbytery 
carried their hostility against Mr. Barclay so far, as 
to refuse him a certificate of character, which is 
alw.ays done, as a matter of course, when a preacher 
leaves their bounds. He appealed to the synod, 
and afterwards to the Assembly, who found (though 
he was in no instance accused of any immorality) 
that the presbyteiy were justified in withholding the 
certificate. He had no alternative, and therefore 
left the communion of the Church of Scotland. A 
great many friends in Edinburgh, who had adopted 
his peculiar sentiments, formed themselves into a 
church, and urged him to become their pastor. The 
people of Fettercaim also solicited him to labour in 
the ministry amongst them; but for the present he 
declined both invitations. Having hitherto held 
only the status of a probationer or licentiate, he 
visited Newcastle, and was ordained there, October 
I2th, 1773. The certificate of ordination is signed 
by the celebrated James Murray of Newcastle, the 
author of the well-known Sermons to Asses, which 
contain a rich vein of poignant satire, not unworthy 
of Swift. It was also signed by Robert Somerville 
of Weardale, and James Somerville of Swallwell, 
and Robert Green, clerk. His friends at Fettercaim 
meanwhile erected a place of worship at Sauchyburn, 
in the immediate neighbourhood, and renewed their 
application to have him settled amongst them. But 
Mr. Barclay, conceiving that his sphere of usefulness 
would be more extended were he to reside in Edin- 
burgh, gave the preference to the latter. Mr. James 
M'Rae, having joined Mr. Barclay, was ordained 
minister at Sauchyburn in spring, 1774. The con- 
gregation there, at this time, consisted of from 1000 
to 1200 members. 

Mr. Barclay remained in Edinburgh about three 
years; and was attended by a numerous congregation, 
who had adopted his views of religious truth. But 
having a strong desire to disseminate his opinions, 
he left the church at Edinburgh under the care of 
his elders and deacons, and repaired to London. 
For nearly two years he preached there, as well as 
at Bristol, and other places in England. A church 
was formed in the capital. He also established 
there a debating society, which met weekly in the 
evening, for the purpose of dis])uting with any who 
might be disposed to call his doctrines in question. 
One of those who went with the design of impugning 
Mr. Barclay's ojiinions was Mr. William Nelson, 
who eventually became a convert. This gentleman 
had been educated in the Church of I'higland, but, 
when Mr. liarclay came first to London, had joined 
the Whitefieldian or Calvinistic Methodists. He 
afterwards came to Sc(jtland, was connected with 
Mr. Barclay, practised as a surgeon in Edinburgh, 
and delivered lectures on chemistry there, for about 
ten years. He was a man of considerable abilities, 
amiable in private life, and of the most unblemished 
character. He was cut off by apoplexy in 1800. 

At Edinburgh Mr. Barclay published an edition 
of his works in three volumes, including a jjrelty 
large treatise on the Sin against the Holy Ghost, 
which, accf)rding to him, is merely unbelief or dis- 
crediting the Scripture. In 1783 he ])ublished a 
small work for the use of the Berean churches, TIic 
I-.pistle to the HebrL-ivs Paraphrased, with a collection 



JOHN BARCLAY, M.D. 



87 



of psalms and songs from his other works, accom- 
panied with A Close Examination into the Truth of 
several recei-'ed Principles. 

Mr. Barclay died on the 29th of July, 1798. Being 
Sabbath, when on his road to preach, he felt him- 
self rather unwell; he took a circuitous route to the 
meeting-house, but finding himself no better, he 
called at the house of one of the members of his con- 
gregation. In a few minutes after he entered the 
house, while kneeling in prayer beside a chair, he 
expired without a groan, in the sixty-fourth year of 
his age, and thirty-ninth of his professional career. 
His nephew Dr. John Barclay was immediately 
sent for, who declared his death to have been occa- 
sioned by apoplexy. He was interred in the Calton 
old burying-ground, Edinburgh, where a monu- 
ment has been erected to his memory. Mr. Barclay 
was a very uncommon character, and made a great 
impression upon his contemporaries. 

There are Berean churches in Edinburgh, Glasgow, 
Crieff, Kirkcaldy, Dundee, Arbroath, Montrose, 
Brechin, Fettercairn, and a few other places. 

BARCLAY, John, ^LD., an eminent lecturer 
on anatomy, was the nephew of John Barclay, the 
Berean, after whom he was named. He was born 
in 1759, or 1760, at Cairn, near to Drummaquhance, 
in Perthshire. His father was a respectable farmer 
in that part of the country, and was characterized 
by great natural shrewdness and vivacity. His son 
John was educated at the parish school of Muthill, 
and early distinguished himself by his superior powers 
of mind, and by his application. Being destined for 
the church, he in 1776 repaired to the university 
of St. Andrews, where he became a successful 
candidate for a bursary. He made great proficiency 
in the Greek language, and also discovered a par- 
tiality for the study of mathematics, although he 
tloes not appear to have prosecuted this important 
branch of science. After having attended the usual 
preliminary classes at the united college of .St. 
.Salvador and St. Leonard, Barclay studied divinity 
in St. Mary's, attaching himself to the moderate 
party in the church. He studied divinity at St. 
Andrews, under the professor, Dr. .Spence, for two 
or three sessions, but having engaged to teach 
a school, he found it more convenient to deliver the 
prescribed exercises before the professor in Edin- 
burgh. On one of these occasions there took place 
a very singular occurrence, which the doctor himself 
used to relate. Having come to Edinburgh for the 
express purpose of delivering a discourse in the hall, 
he waited upon his uncle, who was an excellent 
scholar. It was what is called "an exercise and 
addition," or a discourse, in which the words of the 
original are criticised — the doctrines they contain 
illustrated — and it is concluded by a brief paraphrase. 
He proposed to read it to his uncle before he 
delivered it— and when he was in the act of doing 
so, his respected relative objected to a criticism 
which he had introduced, and endeavoured to show 
that it was contrary- to several passages in the 
writings of the apostle Paul. The doctor had pre- 
pared tlie exercise with great care, and had quoted 
the authority of Xenophon in regard to the meaning 
of thj word. The old man got into a violent passion 
at his ne[>hew's ol^^tinacy, and seizing a huge folio 
that lay on tiie table, hurled it at the recusant's head, 
which it fortunately mi.-seii. Barclay, who really 
had a great esteem for his uncle, related the anecdote 
to a clergvman a few days after it happened, and 
laughed very heartily at it. liarclay wrote about 
this time, A Hislery of all A't-l/'i^'tivts, but of this 
no trace was to be found among his manuscripts. 



Having delivered with approbation his trial dis- 
courses, he obtained license from the presbytery of 
Dunkeld. Meanwhile he acted as tutor to the two 
sons of Sir James Campbell, of Aberuchill, whose 
daughter, Eleonora, in 181 1, became his wife. In 
1789 he accompanied his pupils to Edinburgh, where 
he preached occasionally for his friends. The 
medical school of Edinburgh was then at the height 
of its reputation. Cullen's brilliant career was 
drawing to a close, and he was succeeded by the 
celel)rated Dr. Gregorj'. Dr. Black and the second 
Monro still shed lustre on their respective depart- 
ments. Barclay was principally attracted to the 
anatomical class by the luminous prelections of Dr. 
Monro, and appears to have thenceforward devoted 
himself to a complete course of medical study. In 
1796 he took the degree of M.D., choosing as the 
subject of his thesis De An/ma, sac Principio Vitali, 
the vital principle having long been with him 
a favourite topic of speculation. After graduation. 
Dr. Barclay proceeded to London, and attended the 
anatomical lectures of Dr. Marshall, of Thavics Inn. 
In 1797 he commenced a course of private lectures 
on anatomy in a small class-room in the High-School 
yards, Edinburgh, but had to contend with for- 
midable difficulties; the popularity of the second 
Monro and of John Bell being still undiminished 
amongst the students. Dr. Barclay, therefore, had 
few students at first; but he resolved to persevere. 
The introductory lectures (which, after his death, 
were published by his friend. Sir George Ballingall, 
M.D.) were prepared with scrupulous care. He 
studied to express himself in plain and perspicuous 
language, which he justly esteemed to be the chief 
quality of style in lecturing. His illustrations were 
clear and copious, and not unfrequently an apposite 
anecdote fixed more strongly in the memories of 
his pupils the particular part he was demonstrating; 
and, at a time when it was by no means fashionable, 
he never omitted to point out the wisdom of God, 
as displayed in that most wonderful of all his works, 
the formation and support of the human body. 

Barclay's first literary performance was the article 
' ' Physiolog)^, " in the third edition of the Encyclopudui 
Britannica. In 1803 he published a new anatomical 
nomenclature. This had been long the sul^ject of 
his meditation, and was a great desideratum in 
anatomy. The vagueness or indefinite nature of the 
terms of anatomy has been perceived and regretted 
by all anatomists. They have produced much am- 
biguity and confusion in anatomical descriptions, 
and their influence has been strongly felt, particularly 
by those who have just entered upon the study. 
Barclay was the first who, fully aware of the ob- 
stacles that were thus thrown in the way of students, 
set about inventing a new nomenclature. Tiie 
vagueness of the terms principally referred to those 
implying position, aspect, and direction. Thus, 
what is superior in one position of the body, becon-.es 
anterior in another, posterior in a third, and even 
inferior in a fourth. \Vhat is external in one jiosi- 
tion is internal in another, Ovc. These terms Lecume 
much more ambiguous in comparative anatr.niy. 
His object was to contrive a nomenclature, in v. IulI- 
the same terms should universally ai>]-ily to the >anic 
organ, in all positions of tlie bmly, ami in^ a'd 
animals. It is the opinion of very caii'ii-l iii^'ges 
that he has succeeded in his endeavour. ?.vA t!;at, 
were his nomenclature a<iopteil, the gro:.tc~t a-iNan- 
tages would accrue to tb.e study of the scciice. 1 he 
proposal is delivered with singular i^.iu ;c~:y. ?.'-'A A\^- 
covers lioth a most accurate knuwld^c ^l anatoniy 
and great ingenuity. 

In iSoS appeared his work or. tlie muscular 



88 



JOHN BARCLAY. 



motions of the human body, and in 1812 a descrip- 
tion of the arteries of the human body — both of 
which contain a most complete account of those 
parts of the system. These three wori<s were dedi- 
cated to the late Dr. Thomas Thomson, professor 
of chemistry in the university of Glasgow. The last 
work which Dr. Barclay lived to publish, was an 
inquir)' into the opinions, ancient and modern, con- 
cerning life and organization. This, as we have 
mentioned, formed the subject of his thesis. 

He also delivered, during several summers, a 
course of lectures on comparative anatomy, a branch 
of study for which he had always shown a marked 
partiality — not only as an object of scientific research, 
but as of great practical utility. At one time he 
proposed to the town council, the patrons of the 
university of Edinburgh, to be created professor of 
that department of the science; how the proposal 
was received is not known. The writer of the 
memoir of Dr. Barclay, in the iViUiiralist^s Library, 
furnishes a characteristic illustration of the lively 
interest he felt in the dissections of uncommon 
animals which came in his way in the Scottish 
metropolis. "At one of these we happened to be 
present. It was the dissection of a beluga, or white 
whale. Never shall we forget the enthusiasm of the 
doctor wading to his knees amongst the viscera of 
the great tenant of the deep, alternately cutting 
away with his large and dexterous knife, and regaling 
his nostrils with copious infusions of snuff, while he 
pointed out, in his usual felicitous manner, the 
various contrasts or agreements of the forms of the 
viscera with those of other animals and of man." 
Barclay was the means of establishing, under the 
auspices of the Highland Society, a veterinary school 
in Edinburgh. He might be called an enthusiast 
in his profession: there was no branch of anatomy, 
whether practical or theoretical, that he had not 
cultivated with the utmost care; he had studied the 
works of tlie ancient and modern, foreign and 
British, anatomists with astonishing diligence. What- 
ever related to natural science was certain of interest- 
ing him. The benevolence and generosity of his 
temper were also unbounded. No teacher was ever 
more generally beloved by his pupils than Dr. 
I3arclay, to which his uniform kindness and affability, 
and readiness to promote their interest upon every 
occasion, greatly contributed. Many young men in 
straitened circumstances were permitted to attend 
his instructions gratuitously; and he has even been 
known to furnish them with the means of feeing 
other lecturers. 

It is a curious circumstance, that Dr. Barclay 
often declared that he had neither the sense of taste 
nor of smell. 

His lait appearance in the lecture-room was in 
1825, when he delivered the introductory lecture. 
He died 21st .Vugust, 1826, and was buried at 
Restalrig, near Edinburgh, llie family burying-ground 
of his father-in-law Sir James Campl)ell. His 
funeral was attended by the Royal College of 
Surgeons as a body. 

A bust of Dr. Barclay, subscribed for by his 
pupils, and executed by Joseph, was presented to 
the College of Surgeons, to which he bequeathed 
his museum — a valuable collection of specimens, 
]5articularly in comparative anatomy, and which is 
to retain his name. His design in this legacy was 
to prevent it fn^m being brol-cen up and scattered 
after his death. 

BARCLAY, John, son of William Barclay, was 
V)orn at I'ontamousson in F" ranee, January 28, 1582, 
and was educated under the care of Jesuits. When 



only nineteen years old, he published notes on the 
Thebais of Statius. He was the innocent cause of 
a quarrel between his father and the Jesuits, in con- 
sequence of which the family removed to England, 
in 1603. At the beginning of the year 1604 
young Barclay presented a poetical panegyric to 
the king, under the title of Kaleiida; yaniiaria. 
To this monarch he soon after dedicated the first 
part of his celebrated Latin satire entitled Euphor- 
mioii. John Barclay, like many young men of 
genius, was anxious for distinction, qiwattujue tnodo, 
and, having an abundant conceit of his own abilities, 
and looking upon all other men as only fit to furnish 
him with matter of ridicule, he launched at the very 
first into the dangerous field of general satire. He 
confesses in the Apology which he afterwards pub- 
lished for his Euphormion, that, "as soon as he left 
school, a juvenile desire of fame incited him to attack 
tlie "whole world, rather with a view of promoting his 
own reputation than of dishonouring individuals." 
We must confess that this grievous early fault of 
Barclay was only the transgression of a very spirited 
character. He says, in his dedication oi Etiphormioi 
to King James, written when he was two-and-twenty, 
that he was ready, in the service of his majesty, to 
convert his pen into a sword, or his sword into a 
pen. His prospects at this court were unfortunately 
blighted, like those of his father, by the religious 
contests of the time; and in 1604 the family returned 
to France. John, however, appears to have spent 
the next year chiefly in England, probably upon 
some renewal of his prospects at the court of King 
James. Li 1606, after the death of his father, he 
returned to France, and at Paris married Louisa 
Debonnaire, with whom he soon after settled at 
London. Here he published the second part of his 
Etipkor/nio?!, dedicating it to the Earl of Salisbury, 
a minister in whom he could find no fault but his 
excess of virtue. Lord Hailes remarks, as a sur]:iris- 
ing circumstance, that the writer who could discover 
no faults in .Salisbury, aimed the shafts of ridicule at 
Sully; but nothing can be less surprising in such a 
person as Barclay. A man who satirized only for 
the sake of personal eclat, would as easily flatter in 
gratitude for the least notice. It should also be 
recollected, that many minds do not, till the ap- 
])roach of niidtlle life, acquire the power of judging 
accurately regarding virtue and vice, or merit and 
demerit: all principles, in such minds, are jumbled 
like the elements of the earth in chaos, and are only 
at length reduced to order by the overmastering 
influence of the understanding. In the dis]iosition 
which seems to have characterized Barclay for 
flattering those who patronised him, he endeavoured 
to please King James, in the second part of the 
Eupliormioii, by satirizing tobacco and the Puritans. 
In this year he also jniblished an account of the 
Gunpowder Plot, a work remarked to be singularly 
impartial, considering the religion of the writer. 
I)uring the course of three years' residence in I'^ng- 
land, Barclay received no token of the royal liber- 
ality. Sunk in intligence, with an increasing family 
calling for supjiort, he only wished to be indemnified 
for his English journeys, and to have his charges 
defrayed into France. At length he was relieved 
from his distresses l)y his patron .Salisbury. Of 
these circumstances, so familiar and so discouraging 
to men of letters, we are informed by some allegorical 
and obscure verses written by Barclay at that sad 
season. Having removed to France in 1609, he 
next year ])ublished \\\s Apology for t/ie Eiip/ior/iiion. 
This denotes that he came to see the folly of a 
general contempt for mankind at the age of twenty- 
eight. How he su]iportcd himself at this time 



JOHN BARCLAY. ROBERT BARCLAY. 



89 



does not appear; hut he is found, in 1614, publishing 
liis Icon Animantni, which is declared by a compe- 
tent critic to be the best, though not tlie most 
celebrated, of his works. It is a delineation of the 
genius and manners of the European nations, with 
remarks, moral and philosophical, on the various 
tempers of men. It is pleasant to observe that in 
this work he does justice to the .Scottish people. In 
161 5 Hurclay is said to have been invited l)y Pope 
I'aul V. to Rome. He had previously lashed the 
holy court in no measured terms; but so marked a 
Iioniage from this quarter to his distinction in letters, 
as usual, softened his feelings, and he now accord- 
ingly shifted his family thither, and lived the rest of 
his life under the jjrotection of the pontiff. In 1617 
lie published at Rome his Pamtusis ad Sectarios, 
Libra Duo; a work in which he seems to have aimed 
at atoning for his former sarcasms at tlic pope, by 
attacking those whom his holiness called heretics. 
Barclay seems to have been honoured with many 
marks of kindness, not only from the pope, but also 
from Cardinal Barberini; yet it does not appear that 
he obtained much emolument. Incumbered with a 
wife and family, and having a spirit al)ove his 
fortune, this omission must have been peculiarly 
trying. It was at tiiat time that he composed his 
Latin romance called Argeitis. He employed his 
vacant hours in cultivating a flower garden; and 
Rossi relates, in his turgid Italian style, that Barclay 
cared not for those bulbous roots which produce 
flowers of a sweet scent, but cultivated such as pro- 
duced flowers void of smell, but having variety of 
colours. Hence we may conclude that he was 
among the first of those wiio were infected with that 
strange disease, a passion for tulips, which soon after 
overspread Europe, and is commemorated under the 
name of the tulipo-iitania. liarclay might tnily 
have saiil with Virgil, ^'' Tanttis amor jlontml" He 
had two mastiffs placed as sentinels to protect his 
garden; and rather tiian abandon his favourite flowers, 
chose to continue his residence in an ill-aired and 
unwholesome situation. 

This extraordinary genius, who seems to have 
combined the pcrfcrviJum iit^cniuui of his father's 
country with the mercurial vivacity of his mother's, 
died at Rome on the I2th of August, 1621, in the 
thirty-ninth year of his age. He left a wife, who 
had tormented him much with jealousy (throtigh 
the ardour of her affection, as he explained it), 
besides three children, of whom two were i)oys. tie 
also left in the hands of the printer his celebrated 
.Irj^c'/tis, and also an unpublished history of the 
conquest of Jerusalem, and some fragments of a 
general history of Kuro;)e. He was buried in the 
church of ."^t. Onuphrius, and his widow erected a 
monument to him, with his bust in marl^Ie, at the 
cluirch of St. Lawrence, on the road to Tivoli. A 
strange circumstance caused the destruction of this 
tropliy. Cardinal Barberini chanced to erect a 
munumeut, exactly similar, at the same place, to his 
preceptor, l^cmarJiis GtilicHiis a iiioiite Saiuti Sa/'iiii. 
When the widow of IS.irclay heard of this, slie said, 
"My hu.->l)and was a man of birth, and famous in 
the literary wniM; 1 wtII not suffer him to remain 
on a level with a ba^e and obscure pedagogue." 
She therefore cau-otl the Inist to be removed, and 
the inscrijitinn to he (>l)Hterate(l. The account given 
of the .■l>\riiis I'v Lord Hailes, who wrote a life of 
John Barclay as a >;iecinien of a l^io^rapliia Scotica} 
is as follows: '•Aryans is generally supposed to be 
a history under feigned names, and not a romance. 



' Prime J in 4t''. in i- 
skctch. 



uiui-ujr'r. of the prc>cr.t 



Barclay himself contributed to establish this opinion, 
by introducing some real characters into the work. 
But that was merely to compliment certain digni- 
taries of the church, whose good offices he courted, 
or whose power he dreaded. The key prefixed to 
Argenis has jierpetuated the error. There are, no 
doubt, many incidents in it that allude to the state 
of France during the civil wars in the seventeenth 
century; but it requires a strong imagination indeed 
to discover Queen Elizal)eth in Hyanisl)e, or Henry 
HI. of France in Meleander." On the whole, 
Argenis appears to be a jjoetical fable, replete with 
moral and political reflections. Of this work three 
English translations have appeared, the last in 1772; 
but it now only enjoys the reflective reputation of a 
work that was once in high re[nite. We may quote, 
however, the opinion which Cowjjcr was pleased to 
express regarding this singular production. "It is," 
says the poet of Olney, "the most amusing romance 
that ever was written. It is the only one, indeed, 
of an old date, that I had ever the patience to go 
through with. It is interesting in a high degree, 
richer in incident than can be imagined, full of sur- 
prises, which the reader never forestalls, and yet 
free from entanglement and confusion. The style 
too appears to me to be such as would not dishonour 
Tacitus himself." 

BAECLAY, Robert, the celebrated apologist 
for the Quakers, was born on the 23d of December, 
1648, at Gordonstoun, in Moray. His father, 
Colonel David Barclay, of Ur\-, was the son of 
David Barclay of Mathers, the representative of an 
old Scoto-Xorman family, which traced itself, through 
fifteen intervening generations, to Theobald de 
Berkeley, who acquired a settlement in Scotland at 
the beginning of the tv.elftli century. The mother 
of the apologist was Catherine Gordon, daughter of 
Sir Robert Gordon of Gordonstoun, the premier 
baronet of Nova Scotia, and well-known historian 
of the house of Sutherland. 

The ancient family of De Berkeley became pos- 
sessed of the estate of Mathers, by marriage, in the 
year 1351. Alexander de Berkeley, who flourished 
in the fifteenth centur}-, is said to have been the first 
laird of Mathers wiio changed the name to Barclay. 
David, the grandfather of the apologist, was rctluced 
to such difficulties as to be obliged to sell the estate 
of Mathers, after it ha<l been between two and tliree 
hundred years in the family, as also the more ancient 
inheritance, which had been the property of the 
family from its first settlement in Scotland in the 
days of King David I. His son David, the fath.er 
of the apologist, was consequently obliged to seek 
his fortune as a volunteer in the Scottish brigatles in 
the service of Gustavus Adolphus, King of Sweilen. 
Tills gentleman, like many others of his countrymen 
and fellow-soldiers, returned home on the brcakirig 
out of the religious troubles in Scotland, and receivei 
the command of a troop of horse. H.iving joir.ed 
the a nil y raised by the Duke of Hamilton in 164S 
for the relief of Charles I., he was subsei;i;ci;ily 
dejirived of his command, at the instance oi ( ^\\\-^x 
Cromwell; and he never after\\ari!s appeared in any 
military transactions. During the ]iii)tector.-.;e. lie 
was several times sent as a representative \\'W\ 
Scotland to Cromwell's parliaments, and. i:i th|- 
capacity, is said t<i have unitV>rmly exerted iiimseit 
to repress the ambitioiis design- of the t'l. teetor. 
.\fter the rest, iration, David I'.arclay \vr.- c -nMnittcd 
prisoner to Kdinl)urgh Castle, tqion s< -nie -;■• ■undless 
charge of hostility to the g' .vennnent. He wa- soon 
at'ter liberated, througli the interest o{ tiie F.arl o'i 
MidiUetun, with who'm he had served ;:i ti.e civil 



90 



ROBERT BARCLAY, 



war. But during this imprisonment, a change of the 
highest importance, both to himself and his son, had 
come over his mind. In the same prison was con- 
fined the celebrated laird of Swinton, who, after 
figuring under the protectorate as a lord of session, 
and a zealous instrument for the support of Crom- 
well's interest in .Scotland, had, during a sliort 
residence in England before the restoration, adopted 
the principles of Quakerism, then recently pro- 
mulgated for the first time by George Fox, and was 
now more anxious to gain proselytes to that body 
than to defend his life against the prosecution that 
awaited him. When this extraordinary person was 
placed on trial before parliament, he might have 
easily eluded justice by pleading that the parlia- 
mentary attainder upon which he was now charged 
had become null by the rescissory act. But he 
scorned to take advantage of any plea suggested by 
worldly lawyers. He answered, in the spirit of his 
sect, that when he committed the crimes laid to his 
charge he was in the gall of bitterness and bond of 
iniquity, but that God having since called him to 
the light, he saw and acknowledged his past errors, 
and did not refuse to pay the forfeit of them, even 
though in their judgment this should extend to his 
life. His speech was, though modest, so majestic, 
and, though expressive of the most perfect patience, 
so pathetic, that it appeared to melt the heart of his 
judges, and, to the surprise of all who remembered 
his past deeds, he was recommended to the royal 
mercy, while many others, far less obnoxious, were 
treated with unrelenting severity. Such was the 
man who inoculated David Barclay with those prin- 
ciples of which his son was destined to be the most 
distinguished advocate. 

Rol)ert Barclay, the subject of the present article, 
received the rudiments of learning in his native 
country, and was afterwards sent to the Scots college 
at Paris, of which his uncle Robert (son to the last 
Barclay of Mathers) was rector. Here he made 
such rapid advances in his studies, as to gain the 
notice and praise of the masters of the college; and 
he also became so great a favourite with his uncle, 
as to receive the offer of being made his heir, if he 
would remain in France. But his father, fearing 
that he might be induced to emlirace the Catholic 
faith, went, in comjiliance with his mother's dying 
request, to Paris to bring him home, when he 
was not much more than sixteen years of age. 
The uncle still endeavoured to prevent his return, 
and proposed to purchase for him, and present to 
him immediately, an estate greater than his paternal 
one. Ro!)ert replied, "He is my father, and must 
be ol)eyed." Thus, even at a very early age, he 
showed how far he could prefer a sacred princijjle to 
any view of private intenj?>t, however dazzling. His 
uncle is said to have felt much chagrin at his refusal, 
and to have consequently left his j)roperty to the 
college and to other religious houses in France. 

The return of Robert Barclay to his native country 
took i)lace in 1664, about two years before his father 
made oyian jirofession of the princii)les of the Society 
of Friends. He was now, even at the early age of 
sixteen, jierfectiy skilled in the French and Latin 
languages, the latter of which he could write and 
speak with wonderful fluency and correctness; he 
had also a conqietent knowledge <jf the sciences. 
With regard to the state of his feelings on the subject 
of religion at this early j^eriod of life, he says, in his 
Treatise on Universal Lenje: "My first education, 
from my infancy, fell amongst the strictest sort of 
Calvinists; those of our country being generally ac- 
knowledged to be the severest of that sect; in the 
heat of zeal surpassing not only Geneva, from whence 



they derive their pedigree, but all other the re- 
formed churches abroad, so called. I had scarce got 
out of my childhood, when I was, by the permission 
of divine providence, cast among the company of 
Papists; and my tender years and immature capacity 
not being able to withstand and resist the insinua- 
tions that were used to jjroselyte me to that way, I 
became quickly defiled with the pollutions thereof, 
and continued therein for a time, until it pleased 
God, through his rich love and mercy, to deliver me 
out of those snares, and to give me a clear under- 
standing of the evil of tliat way. In both these sects 
I had abundant occasion to receive impressions con- 
trary to this principle of love:- seeing the straitness 
of several of their doctrines, as well as their practice 
of persecution, do abundantly declare how opposite 
they are to universal love. The time that intervened 
betwixt my forsaking the Church of Rome, and 
joining those with whom I now stand engaged, I 
kept myself free from joining with any sort of people, 
though I took liberty to hear several; and my con- 
verse was most with those that inveigh much against 
judging, and such kind of severity; which latitude 
may perhaps be esteemed the other extreme, opposite 
to the precisencss of these other sects; whereby I 
also received an opportunity to know what usually 
is pretended on that side likewise. As for those I 
am now joined to, I justly esteem them to be the 
true followers and servants of Jesus Christ." 

In his Apology he communicates the following 
account of his conversion to the principles previously 
embraced by his father. "It was not," he says, 
"by strength of argument, or by a particular dis- 
quisition of each doctrine, and convincement of my 
understanding thereby, that I came to receive and 
bear witness of the truth, but by being secretly 
reached by this life. For when I came into the 
silent assemblies of God's people, I felt a secret 
power amongst them which touched my heart; and 
as I gave way unto it, I found the evil weakening in 
me, and the good raised up; and so I became thus 
knit and united unto them, hungering more and 
more after the increase of this power and life, 
whereby I might find myself perfectly redeemed." 
According to his friend William Penn, it was in the 
year 1667, when only nineteen years of age, that he 
iully liecame "convinced, and publicly owned the 
testimony of the true light, enlightening every man." 
"This writer," says he, "came early forth a zealous 
and fervent witness for it [the true light], enduring 
the cross and despising the shame that attended his 
discipleshij), and received the gift of the ministry as 
his greatest honour, in which he laboured to bring 
others to God, and his labour was not in vain in the 
Lord." The tme grounds of Barclay's predilection 
for the meek princi])les of the Friends is perhaps to 
be found in his physical temperament. On arriving 
in Scotland, in 1664, with a heart open to every 
generous inqiulse, his mild nature ajipears, from one 
of the alxjve extracts of his own writings, to have 
lieen shocked by the mutual hostility which existed 
between the adherents of the established ami the dis- 
established churches. While these \^ofX\c^i judged of 
each other in the severest s])irit, they joined in one 
point alone — a sense of the propriety of jiersccuting 
the new and strange sect called Quakers, from whom 
both might rather have learned a lesson of forbear- 
ance and toleration. Barclay, who, from his French 
education, was totally free of all ])rejudices on either 
side, seems to have deliberately preferred that sect 
which alone, of all others in his native country, pro- 
fc>se(i to regard every denomination of fcIlow-Cliris- 
tian^ witli an equal feeling of kindness. 

In February, 1C69-70, Roi:)ert Barclay married 



ROBERT BARCLAY. 



91 



Christian Mollison, daughter of Gilbert Mollison, 
merchant in Aberdeen; and on his marriage settled 
at Ury with his father. The issue of this marriage 
was three sons and four daughters, all of whom 
survived him, and were living fifty years after his 
death. Robert Barclay after his marriage lived 
about sixteen years with his father; in which time 
he wrote most of those works by which his fame has 
been established. All his time, however, was not 
])assed in endeavouring to serve the cause of religion 
with his pen. He both acted and suffered for it. 
His whole existence, indeed, seems to have been 
henceforth devoted to the interests of that profession 
of religion which he had adopted. In prosecution 
of his purpose, he made a number of excursions into 
England, Holland, and particular parts of Germany; 
teaching, as he went along, the universal and saving 
light of Christ, sometimes vocally, but as often, we 
may suppose, by what he seems to have considered 
the far more powerful manner, expressive silence. 
In these peregrinations, the details of which, had 
they been preserved, would have been deeply in- 
teresting, he was on some occasions accompanied by 
the famous William Penn, and probably also by 
others of the brethren. 

The first of his publications in the order of time 
was, " Truth cleared of Calumnies, occasioned by 
a book entitled A Dialogue behveen a Quaker and 
a Stable Christian, written by the Rev. William 
Mitchell, a minister or preacher in tlie neighbour- 
hood of Aberdeen." "The Quakers," says a defender 
of the Scottish church, "were, at this time, only 
newly risen up; they were, like every new sect, ob- 
trusively forward ; some of their tenets were of 
a startling and some of them of an incomprehensible 
kind, and to the rigid Presbyterians especially they 
were exceedingly offensive. Hearing these novel 
opinions, not as simply stated and held by the 
Quakers, who were, generally speaking, no great 
logicians, but in their remote consequences, they 
regarded tiiem with horror, and in the heat of their 
zeal, it must be confessed, often lost sight both of 
charity and truth. They thus gave their generally 
passive opponents great advantages over them. 
Barclay, who was a man of great talents, was certainly 
in this instance successful in refuting many false 
charges, and rectifying many forced constructions 
that had been put upon parts of their practice, and, 
upon the whole, setting the character of his silent 
brethren in a more favourable light than formerly; 
though he was far from having demonstrated, as 
these brethren fondly imagined, 'the soundness and 
.Scrijiture verity of their principles.'" This pul)!ica- 
tion was dated at Ury, the 19th of the second month, 
1670, aiul in the eleventh montli of the same year, 
ho added to it, by way of appendix, "Some things 
of wei:;lny concernment proposed in meekness and 
love, hy way of queries, to the serious consideration 
of the inhabitants of Aberdeen, which also may be 
ot u>e to such as are of the same mind with lliem 
elsewhere in this nation." These queries, twenty in 
nunihcr. were more particularly directed to Messrs. 
David I.yal, George .Meldrum, and John Menzies, 
the ministers of .-Vberdecn, who had, not only from 
the pulpit i'orl)i<l(len their people to read the afore- 
said treati>e, but had applied to the magistrates of 
Abenlcen to suppress it. Mitchell wrote a reply to 
Trutii cleared of Calunuiits, and on the 24th (lav of 
the tenth month. 1671, Barclay finished a rejoinder 
at L'ry. under the title of // 'ilUaiu Mitchell Unmasked, 
or the Sla-e;erutr Instahdity of the I'retended Stable 
Chns'um Discos ered ; his Omissions Ohser'red, and 
Weakr.ess CnzaHed. Ov;c. Tliis goes over the same 
ground with the former treatise, and is seasoned 



with several severe strokes of sarcasm against these 
Aberdonians, who, "notwithstanding they harJ sworn 
to avoid a detestable naitrality, could now preach 
under the bishop, dispense with the doxology, fur- 
bear lecturing and other parts of the directorial 
discipline, at the bishop's order, and yet keep a re- 
serve for presbytery in case it came again in fashion." 
He also turns some of William Mitchell's arguments 
against himself with great ingenuity, though still he 
comes far short of establishing his own theorj-. It 
is worthy of remark, that, in this treatise, he has 
frequent recourse to Richard Baxter's aphorisms on 
justification, whose new law scheme of the gospel 
seems to have been very much to the taste of the 
Quaker. It appears to have been on the appearance 
of this publication that, "for a sign and wonder to 
the generation," he walked through the chief streets 
of the city of Aberdeen, clothed in sackcloth and 
ashes; on which occasion he published (in 1672) 
a Seasonable Warning and Serious Exhortation to, 
and Expostulation zvith, the Inhabitants of Aberdeen, 
concerning this present Dispensation and Day of 
Gods Living Visitatioii to^wards them. 

His next perfonnance was, A Catechism and Con- 
fession of Eaith, the answers to the cjuestions being 
all in the express words of Scripture; and the pre- 
face to it is dated, "From Urj', the place of my 
being, in my native country of Scotland, the nth of 
the sixth month, 1673." This was followed by 
The Anarchy of the Ranters, &c. 

We now come to his great work, ".-^w Apology for 
the true Christian Divinity, as the same is held forth 
and preached by the People called in scorn Quakers: 
being a full explanation and vindication of their 
principles and doctrines, by many arguments deduced 
from Scripture and right reason, and the testimonies 
of famous authors, both ancient and modern; with 
a full answer to the strongest objections usually made 
against them. Presented to the king. Written and 
published in Latin for the infonnation of strangers, 
by Robert Barclay, and now put into our own lan- 
guage for the benefit of his countrvmen." The 
epistle to the king, prefixed to this elaborate work, 
is dated, "From Ury, the place of my pilgrimage, 
in my native countn.' of .Scotland, the 25th of the 
month called November, 1675." This epistle is not 
a little curious, among other things, for the ardent 
anticijiations which the writer indulges with regard 
to the increase and future prevalence of the doctrines 
of the Quakers, which he calls "the gospel now 
again revealed after a long and dark night of apostasy, 
and commanded to be preached to all nations.' 
After some paragraphs, sufficiently complimentaiy 
to the peaceable habits of his silence-loving brethren. 
he tells his majesty that "generations to come will 
not more admire that singular step of Divine Provi- 
dence, in restoring thee to thy throne without blood- 
shed, than they shall admire the increase and proL;rc-s 
of this truth without all outward help, and agaii>t 
so great opposition, which shall be none of the lea-t 
things rendering thy memory remarkable." In 
looking back upon the atrocities tliat marked t'r.c 
reign of Charles II., the growth of r)uakLri-;n '. - 
scarcely ever thought of, an<l the suffering> "t ;'-, 
professors are nearly invisil)le, by rea--on ot t!ic t.;r 
greater sufferings of another branch o! the (.lir;-i'an 
church. Though led by his entlui>ia~:n inli:-"^\:l 
cause to overrate it, Barclay certair.ly ha<l iv) ir/ni,- 
tion of llattering the king, '"(iol.'' lie goc> '-v. tii 
tell him, "hath done great things f^r tlice; he i;at;: 
sufficiently shown thee th.it it is l>y him jrincc- rule. 
and that he can juill down and .~ei up at hi-- : !ca>ure. 
Thou ha^t tasted of prosperity an^l a'.vcr-ity; tli.ju 
knuwe^t wh.it it is tu be banijiied th.y riaiivc coiuru'v, 



92 



ROBERT BARCLAY. 



to be overruled as well as to rule and sit upon the 
throne, ami i)eing oppressed thou hast reason to know 
how hateful the oppressor is. both to God and man. 
If after all these warnings and advertisements, thou 
dost not turn unto the Lonl w ith all thy heart, but 
forget him who remembered thee in thy distress, and 
give up thyself to lust and vanity, surely great will 
be thy condemnation." 

The Apology is a most elaborate work, indicating 
no small portion of both talent and learning. It 
contains, indeed, the sum of the author's thoughts 
in those treatises we have already mentioned, as well 
as in those which he afterwards published, digested 
into fifteen propositions, in which are include<l all the 
peculiar notions of the sect: — immediate revelation; 
the universal spiritual light; silent worship; perfec- 
tion; the rejection of the Sabbath and the sacraments, 
&c. iv:c. This is done with great aj^parent simplicity, 
and many plausible reasons, a number of excellent 
thoughts being struck out by the way; yet they are 
far from being satisfactory, and never will be so to 
any who are not already strongly possessed with an 
idea of the internal light in man, to which the author 
holds even the Scriptures tliemselves to be sub- 
ordinate. There are, indeed, in tlie book, many 
sophisms, many flat contradictions, and many asser- 
tions that are incapable of any proof. The appeals 
which he makes to his own experience for the proof 
of his doctrines are often not a little curious, and 
strongly illustrative of his character, as well as of the 
principles he had adopted. 

The same year in which he published \.\\q Apology, 
he published an account of a dispute with the 
students of Aberdeen, which touches little besides 
the folly of such attempts to establish tnith or con- 
fute error. The following year, in conjunction with 
George Keith, he put forth a kind of second part to 
the foregoing article, which they entitled Quakerism 
Confirmed, being an anyii-er to a pamphlet by Ike 
Aberdeen Students, entitled Quakerism Canvassed. 
This treats only of matters to be found in a better 
form in the Apology. In the first month of the year 
J677, from Aberdeen prison, he wrote his treatise 
of Universal Lofc; and in the end of the same year 
he wrote from his house at Ury, An Epistle 0/ Love 
and Friendly Advice to the Ambassadors of the several 
Princes of Europe, met at Nimeguen, to consult the 
peace of Christendom so far as they are concerned; 
■Zi'herein the true cause of the present war is discovered, 
and the right remedy and means for a firm and 
settled peace is proposed. This last was written in 
Latin, but published also in EngUsh for the benefit 
of his cnuitrymen. Both of the above tracts de- 
serve serious penisal. In 1679 he ])ublished a vin- 
dication of his Apolo':;y: and iii 1686 his last work, 
The Possibility and Xecessity of the In'cvard and Imme- 
diate Pcvelatuvi of the Spirit of God tcrwards the foun- 
dation and ground of true faith; in a letter to a person 
of (juality in Holland; ]iublished both in Latin and 
English. In neither of tiiese, in our opinion, has 
he added anything to his Apology, which, as we have 
already said, contains the sum of all that he has 
written or jjuljlished. 

In the latter j)art of his life, Barclay obtained, by 
the influence of iiis taleiUs and the sincerity and 
simjilicity of his character and professions, an exemj)- 
tion from that ])ersecution whicii marked his early 
years. lie had also contributed in no small degree, 
by the eloquence of his writings in defence of the 
Friends, to procure for them a considerable share of 
public respect. He is even found, strangely encjugh, 
to have latterly possessed some influence at tlie 
dissolute court of Charles II. In 1679 he obtained 
a charter from this monarch, under tiie great seal, 



erecting his lands of Ury,'' into a free barony, with 
civil and criminal jurisdiction to him and his heirs. 
This charter was afterwards ratified by an act of 
parliament, the preamble of which states it to be 
"for tlie many services done by Colonel David 
Barclay, and his son the said Robert Barclay, to 
the king and his most royal progenitors in times 
past." Another and more distinguished mark of 
court favour was conferred upon him in 1682, when 
he received the nominal appointment of governor of 
East Jersey, in North America, from the proprietors 
of that province, of whom his friend the Earl of 
Perth was one. He was also himself made a pro- 
prietor, and had allotted to him 5000 acres of land 
above his proprietary share, as inducements for his 
acceptance of the dignity, which, at the same time, 
he was permitted to depute. The royal commission 
confirming this grant states, that such are his known 
fidelity and capacity, that he has the government 
during life, but that no other governor after him 
shall have it for more than three years. One of his 
brothers settled in the province, but he never visited 
it himself. In this year we find him assisting the 
Laird of Swinton with his interest and purse at 
Edinburgh; thus answering practically and freely the 
apostolic expostulation (i Cor. ix. 11), by permit- 
ting Swinton to reap carnal things, who had sown 
spiritual things to his family. 

The remainder of his life is not marked with many 
instances of public action. Much of it appears to 
have been passed in tranquillity, and in the bosom 
of his family; yet he occasionally undertook journeys 
to promote his private concerns, to serve his rela- 
tions and neighbours, or to maintain the cause of 
his brethren in religious profession. He was in 
London in 1685, and had frequent access to King 
James II., who had all along evinced a warm friend- 
ship towards him. Barclay, on the other hand, 
thinking James sincere in his faith, and perhaps in- 
fluenced a little by the flattery of a prince's favour, 
appears to have conceived a real regard for this 
misguided and imprudent monarch. Liberty of con- 
science having been conceded to the Friends on the 
accession of James II., Barclay exerted his influence 
to procure some parliamentary arrangement, by which 
they might be exempted from the harsh and ruinous 
prosecutions to which they were exposed, in conse- 
quence of their peculiar notions as to the exercise 
of the law. He. was again in London on this 
business in 1686, on wliich occasion he visited the 
seven bishops then confined in the Tower for hav- 
ing refused to distribute in their respective dioceses 
the king's declaration for liberty of conscience, and 
for having represented to the king the grounds of 
their objection to the measure. Tlie po]iular ojMnion 
was in favour of the bishops; yet the former severities 
of some of the episcopal order against dissenters, 
particularly against the Friends, occasioned some 
reflections on them. This having come to the 
knowledge of the imprisoned bishops, they declared 
that "the Quakers had l)elicd them, by rejiorting 
that they hail been the death of some." Robert 
Barclay, being informed of this declaration, went to 
the Tower, and gave their lordships a well-substan- 
tiated account of some persons having been detained 
in prison till death by order of bishops, though 
they had been ajijirised of the danger by jdiysicians 
who were not Quakers. He, however, observed to 
the bishops, that it was by no means the intention 
of tlie P'riends to publish such events, and thereby 
give tiie king and their other adversaries any ad- 



1 His fallicr had died in 1C76, leaving him in pobscssion of 
this cbtatc. 



WILLIAM BARCLAY 

vantage against them. Darclay was in London, for 
the last time, in the memorable year 1688. He 
visited James II., and being with him near a 
window, the king looked out, and observed that 
**tiie wind was then fair for the Prince of Orange to 
come over." Robert Barclay replied, "it was hard 
that no expedient could be found to satisfy the 
people." The king declared "he would do any- 
thing becoming a gentleman, except parting with 
liberty of conscience, which he never would whilst 
he lived." Barclay took a final leave of the un- 
fortunate king, for whose disasters he was much 
concerned, and with whom he had been several 
times engaged in serious discourse. 

Robert Barclay "laid down the body," says 
Andrew Jaffray, "in the holy and honourable truth, 
wherein he had served it about three and twenty 
years, upon the 3d day of the eighth month, 1690, 
near the forty and second year of his age, at his own 
house of Urie, in Scotland, and it was laid in his 
own burial ground there, upon the 6th day of the 
same month, before many friends and other people." 
His character has been thus drawn by another of 
the amicable fraternity to which he belonged:' — 

" He was distinguished by strong mental powers, 
particularly by great penetration, and a sound and 
accurate judgment. His talents were much improved 
by a regular and classical education. It does not, 
however, appear that his superior qualifications pro- 
duced that elation of mind which is too often tlieir 
attendant: he was meek, humljle, and ready to allow 
to others the merit they possessed. All his passions 
were under tlie most excellent government. Two 
of his intimate friends, in their character of him, 
declare that they never knew him to be angry. He 
had the happiness of early perceiving the infinite 
superiority of religion to every other attainment; and 
the Divine grace enabled him to dedicate his life, 
and all that he possessed, to promote the cause of 
piety and virtue. P'or the welfare of his friends he 
was sincerely and warmly concerned: and he travelled 
and wrote much, as well as suffered cheerfully, in 
support of the society and the principles to which he 
had conscientiously attached himself. But this was 
not a blind and bigoted attachment. His zeal was 
tempered with charity; and he loved and respected 
goodness wherever he found it. His uncorrupted 
integrity and liberality of sentiment, his great abilities 
and suavity of disposition, gave him much interest 
with persons of rank and intluence, and he employed 
it in a manner that marked the benevolence of his 
heart. He loved peace, and was often instrumental 
in settling disputes, and in producing reconciliations 
between contending parties. ... In private 
life he was equally amiable. His conversation was 
cheerful, guarded, and instmctive. He was a dutiful 
son, an atTectionate and faithful husband, a tender 
and careful father, a kind and considerate master. 
Without exaggeration, it may l>e said, that piety and 
virtue were recommended by his example; and that, 
though the period of his life was short, he had, by 
the aid of divine grace, most wisely and hajipily 
improved it. He lived long enough to manifest, in 
an eminent degree, the teniper and conduct of a 
Christian, and tlie virtues and qualifications of a true 
minister of tlie gospel.'' 

BARCLAY, William, an eminent civilian, and 
fitlier of the still more ceiel)rated author of the 
Ar^iiiis, was descended from one of the best families 
in Scotland under the rank of nol)ilit\', and was 



LADY ANNE BARNARD. 



93 



1 .-J .V/;<'r/ AcwDit ,y ::u Lfjl- and ii'ri:{,:^s r/ Kch 
Carji'.iy, Lonjun, iSoi. 



bom in .M)crdeenshirc, in 1541. He spent his early 
years in the court of Queen Mary, with wh<jm he 
was in high favour. After her captivity in England, 
disgusted with the turbulent state of his native 
country, which promised no advantage to a man of 
learning, he removed to France (1573), and began 
to study the law at Bourges. Having in time quali- 
fied himself to teach the civil law, he was ajjpointed 
by the Duke of Lorrain, througii the recommend.i- 
tlon of his kinsman Kdmund Hay, the Jesuit, to l>c 
a professor of that .science in the university of I'on- 
tamousson, l)eing at tlie same time counsellor of 
state and master of requests to his ])rincely patron. 
In 1581 he married Anne de Maleviile, a young 
lady of Lorrain, by whom he had his son John, the 
subject of a preceding article. This youth showed 
tokens of genius at an early period, and was sought 
from his father by the Jesuits, that he might enter 
their society. The father, thinking proper to refu^e 
the request, became an object of such wrath to that 
learned and unscnipulous fraternity, that he was 
compelled to abandon all his preferments, and seek 
refuge in England. This was in 1603, just at the 
time when his native sovereign had acceded to the 
throne of England. James I. offered him a pension, 
and a place in his councils, on condition that he 
would embrace the Protectant faith; but though 
indignant at the intrigues of the Jesuits, he W(ju!d 
not desert their religion. In 1604 he letunied to 
Erance, and became professor of civil law at Angers, 
where he taught for a considerable time with higli 
reputation. It is said that he entertained a very- 
high sense of the dignity of his office. He used to 
"go to school every day, attended by a servant who 
went before him, himself having a rich robe lined 
with ermine, the train of which was supported by 
two servants, and his son upon his right hand; and 
there hung about his neck a great chain of gold, 
with a medal of gold with his own picture." Such 
was, in those days, the pomp and circumstance of 
the profession of civil law. He did not long enjoy 
this situation, dying towards the close of 1605. He 
is allowed to have been very learned, not only in the 
civil and canon law, but in the classical languages, 
and in ecclesiastical history. But his prejudices 
were of so violent a nature as to obscure both his 
genius and erudition. He zealously maintained the 
at:)solute power of monarchs, and had an illiberal 
antipathy to the Protestant religion. His works are: 

1. A Coutrozcrsial Treatise on the I\cva! /''Tivr, 
against Bitc/iaiian ana' other A'ifig-killers, Paris, 1600; 

2. A Treatise on the Poicer 0/ the Pope, sho^.oiiig that 
he has no Right of Rule ozer Seeiilar Princes, l6cx}; 

3. A Commentary on the litle of the Pandects de 
Re/'is Creditis. (kc. ; 4. .•/ Commentary on Tacitus 
Life of Agrieola. All these works, as well as tlicir 
titles, are in Latin. 

BARNARD, Lady Anne. This lady, wlio by 
a single song has immortalized her name, was tl;c 
eldest daughter of the fifth Earl of P.alcarres. SI.j 
was born on the 8th of December, 1750, and i;n ler 
circumstances that were grievou^ly si;li\er>ive '■! a 
cherished prediction. "There had long exi~ied a 
prophecy that the first child of the last tie.-cen':.-:!.', • t 
the house of I'alcarres was to re>tore tlie fanii'v > ■: 
Stuart to those hereditary riglits wliieh tl'.e i'-,-;"'-!y 
of James had deprived tlieni ot. The J.iu'I .U-^ 
seemed to have gained new life en tlie "Cca-;'t;: tl'.e 
wizards and witches of the party had \"\\\-.'\ it in their 
books; the devil had menti' 'ned it to . .r.e < r two nf 
his ]iarticular frienci-; old ladies ha-1 re.i'. ;t Ii-av. tlie 
grounds of tlieir coffee, — no wnndcr il "i.e eve;;; v,as 
welcomed bv the gr.i-p uf exriring i. •; -. 



94 



LADY ANNE BARNARD. 



In due course of time the partizans of the Pretender, 
th2 soothsayers, wizards, witches, the bards, fortune- 
tellers, and old ladies, were all in a group, amazed, 
disconcerted, and enraged to learn that Lady Balcarres 
was brought to bed of a daughter after all, — absol- 
utely but a daughter." Such is her own amusing 
account of the circumstances under which she was 
ushered into the world. "That child," she adds, 
"was the Anne Lindsay who now addresses you, 
and in the arms of my nurse I promised to be a little 
heiress, perhaps a heroine worthy of having my name 
posted on the front of a novel." 

After an account of her infancy and youth written 
in the same lively style. Lady Anne Lindsay (for 
this was her maiden name) gives an account of the 
education by which her mind was formed. Not the 
least of her intellectual advantages was the society 
with which she was brought in contact, in her occa- 
sional visits to Edinburgh; and among the dis- 
tinguished of the day whom she met in that city, may 
be mentioned, Henry Mackenzie, author of 'J'hc 
Miin of Feeling, Lord Monboddo, and in 1773 Dr. 
Johnson, when he visited the northern metropolis. 
One part of her self-education at her country-house 
in Fifeshire is too interesting to be omitted: — "Re- 
siding," she says, "in the solitude of the country, 
without other sources of entertainment than what I 
could draw from myself, I used to mount up to my 
little closet in the high winding staircase, which 
commanded the sea, the lake, the rock, the birds, 
the beach, — and, with my pen in my hand, and a 
few envelopes of old letters (which too often vanished 
afterwards), scribble away poetically and in prose, 
till I made myself an artificial happiness, which did 
very well pour passer le temps, though far better 
would my attempts have been had I had Margaret's 
judgment to correct them." 

The fruits of such training was the song of Aitld 
Ko!'in Gray, which Lady Anne wrote in the beginning 
of 1772, when she was twenty-one years old. As every 
circumstance connected with such a matchless lyric is 
interesting, and as no account can be more interesting 
than that of the authoress, we give it in her own 
words: — "Robin Gray, so called from its being the 
name of the old herdsman at Balcarres, was born 
soon after the close of 1771. My sister Margaret 
had married, and accompanied her husband to 
London; I was melancholy, and endeavoured to 
amuse myself by attempting a few poetical trifles. 
There was an ancient .Scotch melody of wliich I was 
passionately fond, — Sopliy Johnston, wlio lived 
before your day, used to sing it to us at Balcarres; I 
longed to sing old .Sophy's air to different words, and 
to give to its ])Iaintive tones some little history of 
virtuous fijstress in humble life, such as might suit it. 
\Vhile attem]iting to effect this in my closet, I called 
to my little sister, now Lady Ilardwicke, who was 
the only ]ier^on near me — 'I have been writing a 
1>allad, my dear; I am o])pressing my heroine with 
many misfortunes: I liave alrea<ly sent her Jamie to 
sea, and broken her father's arm, and made her 
mother fall sick, and given her auld Robin Gray for 
a lover, but I wish to load her with a fifth sorrow in 
the four lines, poor thing I help me to one, I ]>ray.' 
— '.Steal the cow, sister -Xniie, said the little l^liza- 
beth. The cow was immediately lifted by me, and 
the song completed. At our fireside, amongst our 
neighbours, Auld Kohin Gray was always called for; 
I was pleased with the a]iprobation it met with, but 
such was my dread of being siisj^ected of writing 
anything, perceiving the shyness it created in th(jse 
who could write nothing, that I carefully ke])t my 
own secret. . . . ^ieantime, little as this matter 
seems to have been worthy of dispute, it afterwards 



became almost a party question between the sixteenth 
and eighteenth centuries: Kobin Gray was either a 
very, very ancient ballad, composed perhaps by 
David Rizzio, and a great curiosity; or a very, very 
modem matter, and no curiosity at all. I was per- 
secuted to confess whether I had written it, or if not, 
where I had got it. Old .Sophy kept my counsel, 
and I kept my own, in spite of the gratification of 
seeing a reward of twenty giuneas offered in the 
newspapers to the person who should ascertain the 
point past a doubt, and the still more flattering 

circumstance of a visit from Mr. J , secretary to 

the Antiquarian Society, who endeavoured to entrap 
the truth from me in a manner I took amiss. Had 
he asked me the question obligingly, I should have 
told him the fact distinctly, but confidentially; the 
annoyance, however, of this important ambassador 
from the antiquaries was amply repaid to me by 
the noble exhibition of the ballet of Auld l\ohi)t 
Gray^s Courtship, as performed by dancing dogs 
under my windows: — it proved its popularity from 
the highest to the lowest, and gave me pleasure while 
I hugged myself in my obscurity." Li the reticence 
of Lady Anne, that could keep the fact of her 
authorship concerded after her ballad had become 
the admired of all classes, and been translated into 
almost every European language, there was a power 
of secretiveness more remarkable than the talent by 
which such beautiful verses were created. It was 
only in 1823, fifty-two years after the song had been 
composed, that she broke silence, and confessed 
herself the author of the song. The occasion also 
was worthy of the acknowledgment. In that year, 
when the tale of the Pirate appeared, the author of 
IVaverley compared the condition of Minna to that of 
Jeannie Gray, "the village-heroine in Lady Anne 
Lindsay's beautiful ballad:" — 

"Nae langer she wept, her tears were a' spent, 
IJcspair it was come, and she thought it content: 
She thought it content — but her cheek it grew pale. 
And she drooped hke a snow-drop broke down by the hail." 

This detection by the highest literary authority fif 
the day, convinced Lady Anne that concealment was 
no longer possible; and in a letter to .Sir Walter she 
wrote the confession from which we have quoted. 

It was not until many years after Auld A'ol'iii Gray 
was written, that a second part was added to it. 
It was produced also to gratify the wishes of her 
mother the Countess of Balcarres, who had often said 
to her, "Annie, I wish you would tell me how that 
unlucky business of Jeanie and Jamie ended." I^ady 
Anne had also got a hint for the develojiment of the 
plot, of which she now availed herself. On hearing 
the song as it first appeared, the laird of Dalzell 
burst out wrathfully with, "Oh the villain ! oh the 
auld rascal I / ken wha stealt the poor lassie's coo 
— it was Auld Robin Gray himsel !" In the second 
jiart therefore, "Auld Rob" is seized with remorse 
at the sight of his broken-hearted wife's rc])ining; 
t.akes tf) his bed, and after confessing that he had 
stolen the cow for the jnirpose of furthering his suit, 
he dies, leaving Jamie his sole heir, and recommend- 
ing that the jiair should be married — an advice which 
they are not slow to folhnv. But like all such 
additions, the second part was a failure. The secjuel 
was an abru])t intrusion upon the pleasing jxieticnl 
sadness in which the first ])art left the hearers, and 
they were in no mood to l>e defrauded u\ sucii a 
sentimental luxury. The voice of the singer and the 
feelings of the audience were too much touched by 
the first part, to endure the details of the second. 

Her sister Margaret, who had married very early 
and become a widow, was joined in London by Latly 



LADY AXNE BARNARD ANDREW BARTON. 



95 



Anne. The beauty and accomplishments of the two 
ladies procured them a choice society and many 
admirers, and the hand of Anne was sought in 
marriage by several men of the first distinction in 
the country. The house of the attractive sisters 
in London is described by Lord Balcarres, their 
brother, as having become "the meeting-place of 
great and good characters, literary and political ;" 
and the most distinguished of these, Burke, Sheridan, 
Windham, and Dundas, confirm the assertion. The 
Prince of Wales was also their familiar guest and 
friend, and his attachment to Lady Anne ended only 
with his life. She remained single until 1793, when 
she gave her hand to Andrew Barnard, Esq., the son 
of the Bishop of Limerick, an accomplished but not 
wealthy gentleman, and younger than herself, whom 
she accompanied to the Cape of Good IIo])e, in con- 
sequence of his ap])ointment as colonial secretary 
under Lord Macartney. The journals of her resi- 
dence at the Cape, and of her excursions into the 
interior of the country, illustrated witli drawings 
and sketches of the scenes described, are still pre- 
served among the family manuscripts. When in 
South Africa, she had always a strong wish to visit 
Australia, then only known as "Botany Bay," "not," 
she humorously adds, "from a longing to commit 
a crime, but from a desire to rejoice with the angels 
over repenting sinners. If one reformed rogue gives 
to beatified spirits as much joy as the good conduct 
of ninety-nine righteous jjcrsons, what a feeling must 
be created by such a group!" Like other amiable 
enthusiasts of the period, slie thought that liotany 
Bay was a blessed reformatory, instead of the whole- 
sale Newgate which it in reality was. "But it 
would appear," she adds, "so strange a measure to 
go there from choice, that I believe it would be 
necessary to commit some peccadillo as an apology 
to my relations for going at all." Her desire for 
this trip would probably have been fulfilled, as her 
husband shared in the wish, and intended on his 
return to England to have taken her home by that 
very circuitous route; but the peace of 1S02 com- 
pelled Mr. Barnard to remain behind at the Cape, 
to settle colonial business with the Dutch, while 
Lady Anne went to England to procure a situation 
for her husband under government, on his return — 
an application, however, which was unsuccessful. 

By the death of Mr. Barnard at the Cape in 1807, 
Lady Anne was left a childless widow, and she 
again took up her residence with her sister Margaret, 
in Berkeley Square, London, until the latter was 
married for the second time in 1812 to .Sir James 
Burgess. After this period she continued her 
honoured course in London, beloved by its choicest 
society, and maintaining at the age of threescore and 
ten, aiul even beyond it, that clieerfulness and con- 
versational power which had made her througli her 
whole lile the chann of her numerous acquaintances. 
.\n amusing proof of this one day occurred when she 
was entertaining a party of her friends at dinner. 
Some difficulty had occurred in the kitchen arrange- 
ments, on which account an old servant, who knew 
tile iacxiiaustihie mental resources of her mistress, 
glided to her behind her chair, and whispered in her 
ear, ".My lady, you must tell another story— tlie 
second course won't lie ready for five minutes." Of 
the strong and abiding friendsliips she created in the 
hearts of others, a jiroof was given in that of the 
Prince of Wales (afterwards Cieorge IV.), who, on 
the death of her hushaml, wrote to her a letter of 
sympatliy, of itself sufficient to redeem his character 
from the prevailing charge of selfishness. In his last 
illness he also sent fir her. and after speaking to her 
aUectionately, he said, "Sister. Anne (the title with 



which he usually addressed her), I wished to see you, 
to tell you that I love you, and wish you to accept 
this golden chain for my sake — I may never see you 
again." The chief literary occupation of her old 
age was in writing reminiscences of the Lindsays, to 
add to the family history— a task which her father, 
Earl James, had commenced, and which he wished 
his children to continue. "It was a maxim of my 
father's," she said, "that the person who neglects to 
leave some trace of his mind behind him, according 
to his capacity, fails not only in his duty to society, 
but in gratitude to the Author of his being, and mav 
be said to have existed in vain. 'Ever)- man,' said 
he, 'has felt or thought, invented or observed: alittle 
of that genius which we receive fr(;m nature, or a 
little of that experience which we buy in our walk 
through life, if becjueathed to the community, would 
ultimately become a collection to do honour to the 
family where such records were preserved.'" I lence 
the large and valuable additions whicli she made 
to the Lizvs of the Lindsays, and tiie cojjious re- 
miniscences of a long life which constitute the ])rinci- 
pal charm of that interesting work. Although she 
must have written much poetry as well as prose, 
her characteristic shyness where her verses were in 
question have made her productions of tliis kind 
unknown — with the exception oi Aitld Robin Gray, 
which of itself is sufficient to estal^lish her lasting 
fame as a poetess. Lady Anne Barnard died on 
May 6th, 1825, in the seventy-fourth year of her age. 

BARTON, Andrew, High Admiral of Scotland. 
The fifteenth century was the great era of mari- 
time adventure and discover)'; and in these it might 
have been expected that Scc)tland would have taken 
her full share. The troubled state of the countn,-, 
however, and the poverty of its sovereigns, prevented 
the realization of such a hoi^e. There was no royal 
navy, and such ships as were to be found in the 
.Scottish service were merchant vessels, and the 
]iroperty of private individuals. Still, there was no 
lack of stout hardy sailors and skilful commanders; 
and although the poverty of .Scotland was unal)le to 
funiish means for remote and uncertain voyages of 
discovery, the same cause made them eager to enjoy 
the advantages of trafiic with those countries that 
were already known. Another cause was the long 
peace with England during the reign of Henry \TI., 
so that those daring spirits who could no longer find 
occupation in fight or foray by land, were fain tri 
have recourse to the dangers of another element. 
The merchant, also, who embarked with his own 
cargo, was obliged to know something more than 
tlie gainful craft of a mere trarler. He was captain 
as well as proiirietor, and had to add the science of 
navigation and the art of warfare on sea, to that C'f 
skilful Ijargaining on shore, and tluis, in every variety 
of ways, his intellectual powers were tried and per- 
fected. This was an occuj^aticm well fitted tu tl.c 
.Scottish mind, in which it consequently Ijccanie >'i 
pre-eminent, tiiat during the reigns of James HI. 
and James I\'., it scLined a doiiblfid ijuestii !i 
whether Scotland or I-'.ngland was to b^-ar t!:c 
"meteor flag" of the i.-.land; and of the merclia:;: 
captains of this period, the most di>tingr.i>!K-d v.tr.- 
Sir Andrew Wood, of Largo; Sir Alexanilcr Mritb.ii- 
son; William Merrimonth. of l.ciih, wlm, fr h:- 
naval skill, was called the "kir.g rt tI.e.-L.i; r.;. 1 
the Bartons. 

This ]5arton family, wliich for two giTura'.;. :> 
produced naval commander,-- of gixra ci.Ii: );■>'. t.r-i 
appeared in .'-^ct.ittisli lii-t.^ry in I476. Tli;- ^'.."iS in 
consequence of Joh.n liaitin. the t.-.thcr ■ f .Vmirc-.v, 
liaving been idundereii, and, it I;.";; Ki.n aodc^:. 



ANDREW BARTON. 



murdered, by the Portuguese, who at that period 
were all-prevalent upon the ocean. The unfortunate 
mariner, however, had three sons, the eldest of 
whom was Andrew, all brought up from boyhood in 
his own profession, and not likely to allow their 
father's death to pass unquestioned. Andrew accord- 
ingly instituted a trial in Flanders, where the murder 
was perpetrated, and obtained a verdict in his favour; 
but the Portuguese refusing to pay the awarded 
penalty, the Bartons applied to their own sovereign 
for redress. James accordingly sent a herald to tlie 
King of Portugal; but this application having also 
been in vain, he granted to the Bartons letters of 
reprisal, by which they were allowed to indemnify 
themselves by the strong hand upon the ships of 
the Portuguese. And such a commission was not 
alloweil to lie idle. The Bartons immediately tlirew 
themselves into the track of the richly-laden carracks 
and argosies of Portugal in their homeward way 
from Inilia and South America; and sucli was tlieir 
success, that they not only soon indemnified them- 
selves for their losses, but won a high reputation 
for naval skill and valour. Among the rich Indian 
spoil that was brought home on this occasion, were 
several Hindoo and negro captives, whose ebony 
colour and strange features astounded, and also 
alarmed, the simple people of Scotland. James IV. 
turned these singular visitants to account, Ijy making 
them pLiy the part of Ethiopian queens and African 
sorcerers in tlie masques and pageants of his court. 
This was in itself a trifle, but it gave a high idea of 
the growing naval importance of Scotland, when it 
could produce such spectacles as even England, with 
all its su]ierior wealth, power, and refinement, was 
unable to furnish. 

It was not merely in such expeditions which had 
personal profit or revenge for their object that the 
Bartons were exclusively employed; for they were in 
the service of a master (James IV.) who was an 
enthusiast in naval affairs, and who more tiian all his 
predecessors understood tlie necessity of a fleet as 
the right arm of a British sovereign. Tliis was 
especially the case in his attempts to subjugate the 
Scottish isles, that for centuries had persisted in re- 
bellion under independent kinglings of their own, 
and in every national difficulty had been wont to 
invade the mainland, and sweep the adjacent dis- 
tricts with fire and sword. For the purpose of re- 
ducing them to complete obedience, James not only 
led against them an army in person, but employed 
John Barton, one of the tliree brothers, to conduct a 
fleet, and invade them by sea. The use of ships in 
such a kind of warfare was soon apparent: the 
islanders retreated from the royal army, as hereto- 
fore, in their galleys, and took refuge among their 
iron-b(jund coa->ts, but found these no longer ])Iaces 
of hafety when their fastnesses were assailed from the 
sea, and their strong castles bonil)arded. Tiie cliiefs, 
therefore, yielded themselves to the royal authority, 
and from thenceforth lived in most unwonted sub- 
mission. While thus the .Scottish flag waved over 
those islands tiiat had hitherto Ijeen tiie strongliolds 
of rebellion, another of the Bartons was employed 
to vindicate its dignity abroad and among foreigners. 
Tliis was Andrew, who f>r some time had held with 
liis brothers the chief direction of maritime affairs in 
Scotland, and been employed in the formation of a 
royal navy, as well as in cruises .agaiuNt the rich 
carracks of Portugal. Tiie Hollanders, in the true 
sjurit of piracy by which the maritime communities 
of ICurope were at tliis time inspired, had attacked 
a small fleet of Scottish merchant vessels, and not 
only plundered them, but murdered the crews, and 
thrown their bodies into the sea. This outrage, from 



a people with whom the Scots were at peace, was 
not to be tolerated, and Andrew Barton was sent 
with a squadron to chastise the offenders. And this 
he did with a merciless severity that reminds us of 
the "Douglas Larder." He captured many of the 
l^iratical ships, and not only put their crews to death, 
Init barrelled their heads in the empty casks which 
he found in the vessels, and sent them home to his 
sovereign, to prove how well he had discharged his 
duty. 

The time had now arrived, however, when 
Andrew Barton, after having made so many suc- 
cessful cruises, was to fall ujwn the deck where he 
had so often stood a conqueror. His death, 
also, strangely enough, was mainly owing to the 
tortuous intrigues of a pontiff, about whom, it is 
probable, he had heard little, and cared still less. 
Julius II. having formed designs of political self- 
aggrandizement which a war between h'rance and 
England would have prevented, was anxious to find 
the latter sufficient occupation at home, with its 
turbulent neighbours, the Scots. Portuguese en- 
voys, therefore, at the English court represented to 
Henry VIII. the whole family of the Bartons as 
pirates, who indiscriminately plundered the ships of 
every country; and they charged Andrew, in par- 
ticular, with these offences, and represented how 
desiral)le it would be if the English seas could be 
rid of his presence. Henry listened to these sugges- 
tions, and, with his wonted impetuosity, assented to 
their fulfilment, although a war with Scotland was 
at that time the least desirable event that could have 
befallen him. It has also been alleged by English 
writers, that Andrew Barton, in his war against the 
Portuguese, had not been over-scrupulous in con- 
fining himself to his letters of reprisal, but had also 
over-hauled and pillaged English vessels, under the 
pretext that they had Portuguese goods on board. 
Such, at least, was generally believed in England; 
and the Earl of Surrey, to whom the naval affairs of 
the kingdom chiefly belonged, is declared to have 
sworn tliat the narrow seas should no longer be thus 
infested, while his estate could furnish a ship or his 
family a son to command it. 

The threat of Surrey was not an idle one. He 
fitted out two men-of-war, one of them the largest 
in the English navy, and sent them under the com- 
mand of his sons, Eord Thomas Howard, and Sir 
Edward Howard, afterwards lord higli-adniiral, to 
find and encounter the terrible Scottish seaman. 
They had not long to seek, for in the Downs they 
were apprized of his neighloourhood by the cajitain 
of a merchant vessel which he had jilundered on the 
preceding day. Barton had just returned from a 
cruise against the Portuguese, with two ships, one 
the /,/();/, which himself commanded, and the otlier 
a small armed junnace. ^^'hen the Howards a]i- 
proached, they hoisted no war signal, but merely 
])ut up a willow-wand fin their masts, as if tliey 
were peaceful traders; but when Andrew Barton 
a]i])roaclied, they hoisted their national flag, and 
firetl a broadside into his vessel. On finding that 
he had enemies to deal with, although they were 
of superior force, he fearlessly advanced to the 
encounter. Distinguished by his rich dress, his 
splendid armour of ])roof, and the gold chain around 
his neck, to which was attached a \\'histle of tlie 
same metal, the emblem of his office as high admiral 
of Scotland, he took his stand ujion the highest jjart 
of the deck, and encouraged his men to fight iiravely. 
The battle commenced, and continued on both sides 
with the utmost desperation. One manceuvre of 
.Scottish naval warfare which Barton used, was 
derived from an old Roman practice used against 



ANDREW BARTON JAMES BASSANTIN. 



97 



the Carthaginians, although he had, perhaps, never 
read their history; this was, to drop large weights 
or beams from the yard-arms of his vessel into that 
of the enemy, and thus sink it while the two ships 
were locked together; but, to accomplish this feat, 
it was necessary for a man to go aloft to let the 
weight fall. The English commander, apprised of 
this, had appointed the best archer of his crew to 
keep watch upon the movement, and shoot every 
man who attempted to go aloft for the purpose. 
The archer had already brought down two Scottish 
seamen who had successively vent-.ired to ascend, 
when Andrew Barton, seeing the clanger, resolved 
to make the attempt himself. As he ascended the 
mast for this purpose. Lord Howard cried to his 
archer, "Shoot, villain, and shoot tnie, on peril of 
thy life." "An' I were to die for it," replied the 
man despondingly, "I have but two arrows left." 
These, however, he used with his utmost strength 
and skill. The first shaft bounded from Barton's 
coat of proof, but the second entered the crevice of 
his armour, as he stretched up his hand in the act of 
climbing the mast, and inflicted a mortal wound 
through the arm-pit. He descended as if unhurt, 
and exclaimed, "Fight on, my merry men; 1 am 
but slightly wounded, and will rest me awhile, but 
will soon join you again; in the meantime, stand 
you fast by the cross of Saint Andrew!" He then 
blew his whistle during the combat, to encourage 
his followers, and continued to sound it as long as 
life remained. After his death the conflict termi- 
nated in the capture of the Lion, and also the pinnace, 
called the Jenny Pinuen, which were brought in 
triumph into the Thames. The Lion was after\vards 
adopted into the English navy, and was the second 
largest ship in the service, the Great Henry, the 
first vessel which the English had expressly con- 
structed for war, being the largest. 

Such was the end of Andrew Barton, a bright 
name in the early naval history of Scotland. While 
his death was felt as a great national calamity, it was 
particularly affecting to James IV., whose nautical 
studies he had directed, and whose infant navy he 
had made so distinguished among the European 
maritime powers. Rothesay herald was instantly 
despatched to London, to complain of this breacii 
of peace, and demand redress; but to this appeal 
Henry VTH. arrogantly replied, that Barton was a 
pirate, and that the fate of pirates ought never to be 
a subject of contention between princes. Here, 
however, the matter was not to rest. Robert 
Barton, one of Andrew's brothers, was immediately 
furnished with letters of reprisal against the English; 
and thus commissioned, he swept the narrow seas 
so effectually, that he soon returned to Leith with 
thirteen English prizes. War by sea between 
England and Scotland was soon followed by war by 
land, and in the letter of remonstrance and defiance 
to Henry VTH., with which James preceded the 
invasion of England, the unjust slaughter of Andrew 
Barton, and the ca()ture of his ships, were stated 
among the principal grievances for which redress 
was tiuis soiiglit. Even when battle was at hand, 
also. Lord Thomas Howard sent a message to the 
Scottish king, !)oasting of his share in the death of 
Barton, whom he persisted in calling a jMrate, and 
adding, tliat he wxs ready to justify the deed in the 
vanguard, where his command lay, and where he 
meant to show as little mercy as he expected to 
receive. An 1 then succeeded the battle of Flodden, 
in wliijh fiaies and t e l>j>t of tlie Scottish nobility 
fell; and after Flodden. a loss occurred which Barton 
would raliier have died than witnessed. This was 
the utter extinction of liie Scotti.^ii fleet, wlucli was 

VOL. I. 



allowed to lie rotting in the harbours of France, or 
to be trucked away in inglorious sale, like common 
firewood. From that period, Scotland so com- 
pletely ceased to be a naval power, that even at the 
time of the union she not only had no war vessels 
whatever, but scarcely any merchant ships — the few 
that lay in her ports being chiefly the property of the 
traders of Holland; — and full three centuries have to 
elapse before we find another distinguished Scottish 
seaman in the naval history of Great Britain. 

BASSANTIN, or BASSANTOUN, James, as- 
tronomer and mathematician, was the son of the 
laird of Bassintin, in Berwickshire, and probably 
bom in the early part of the sixteenth century. 
Being sent to study at the university of Glasgow, he 
applied himself almost exclusively to mathematics, 
to the neglect of languages and philosophy, which 
were then the most common study. In order to 
prosecute mathematics more effectually than it was 
possible to do in his own country, he went abroad, 
and travelled through the Netherlands, Switzerland, 
Italy, and Germany; fixing himself at last in France, 
where for a considerable time he taught his favourite 
science with high reputation in the university of 
Paris. In that age, the study of astronomy was 
inseparable from astrology, and Bassantin became 
a celebrated proficient in this pretended science, 
which was then highly cultivated in France, insomuch 
that it entered more or less into almost all public 
affairs, and nealy every court in Europe had its 
astrologer. Bassantin, besides his attainments in 
astrology, understood the laws of the heavens to an 
extent which excited the wonder of the age — 
especially when it was considered that he had 
scarcely any knowledge of the Greek or Latin 
languages, in which all that was formerly known of 
this science had been embodied. But, as may be 
easily conceived, astronomy was as yet a most im- 
perfect science; the Copemican system, which forms 
the groundwork of modern astronomy, was not yet 
discovered or acknowledged; and all that was really 
known had in time become so inextricably associated 
with the dreams of astrology, as to be entitled to 
little respect. Bassantin returned to his native 
country in 1562, and in passing through England 
met with Sir Robert Melville of Mordecaimy, who 
was then engaged in a diplomatic mission from Mary 
to Elizabeth, for the puq^ose of bringing about a 
meeting between the two queens. A curious account 
of this rencontre is preser\-ed by Sir James Melville 
in his memoirs, and, as it is highly illustrative of the 
character and pretensions of Bassantin, we shall lay 
it before the reader. "Ane Bassantin, a Scottis 
man, that had been travelit, and was leamit in hich 
scyences, cam to him [Sir Robert Melville] and said, 
'Gud gentilman, 1 hear sa gud rc]3ort of you that I 
love you hartly, and therefore canot forbear to shaw 
you, how all your upricht dealing and your hoiic>t 
travell will be in vain, where ye believe to ohlein a 
weall for our quen at the Quen of Englandis handi>. 
Vou bot tyne your tymc; for, first, they will never 
meit togither, and next, there will nevir be bot 
discembling and secret hattrent for a whyle. and at 
length captivity and utter wrak for our cpien by 
England.' My brother's answer again was, that lie 
lyked not to heir of sic dcviiisch newc-s, nur yet waM 
he credit them in any sort, as false, ungodly, and 
unlawfull for Christians to m\;<.\\c them with. 
Bassantin answered again, 'Gud Mcster Mclvill, tr.k 
not that hard opinion of me; I am a Christian of 
your religion, and fears God, and purjioses never to 
cast myself in any of the unLawful artis that ye mean 
of, bot sa far as Melanthon, wlia was a godiy 



98 



JOHN BASSOL. 



theologue, has declared and written anent the naturall 
scyences, that are lawfull and daily red in dyvers 
Christian 'universities; in the quhilkis, as in all othir 
artis, God geves to some less, to some mair and 
clearer knawledge than till others; be the quhilk 
knawledge I have also that at length, that the king- 
dom of England sail of rycht fall to the crown of 
Scotland, and that ther are some born at this instant 
that sail bruik lands and heritages in England. Bot 
alace it will cost many their lyves, and many bludy 
l)attailes wilbe fouchten first, or [ere] it tak a sattled 
effect; and be my knawledge,' said he, 'the Spani- 
artis will be helpers, and will tak a part to them- 
selves for ther labours, quhilk they wilbe laith to 
leve again.'" If the report of this conference be 
quite faithful, we must certainly do Bassantin the 
justice to say, that the most material part of his 
prophecy came to pass; though it might be easy for 
him to see that, as the sovereign of Scotland was 
heiress-presumptive to the crown of England, she or 
her heirs had a near prospect of succeeding. How 
Bassantin spent his time in Scotland does not appear; 
but, as a good Protestant, he became a warm sup- 
porter of the Earl of Murray, then struggling for the 
ascendency. He died in 1568. His works are — 
I. A Sys/em 0/ Astronomy, published for the third 
time in 1593, by John Tornoesius. 2. A Treatise 
of the Astrolabe, published at Lyons in 1555, and 
reprinted at Paris in 1 61 7. 3. A Pamphlet on the 
Calculation 0/ Nativities. 4. A Treatise on Arith- 
metic. 5. Aliisic on the Principles of the Platonists. 
6. On Mathematics in General. It is understood 
that, in the composition of these works, he required 
considerable literary assistance, being only skilled in 
his own language, which was never then made the 
vehicle of scientific discussion. 

BASSOL, John, a distinguished disciple of the 
famous Duns Scotus, is stated by Mackenzie to have 
been born in the reign of Alexander III. He studied 
under Duns at Oxford, and with him, in 1304, re- 
moved to Paris, where he resided some time in the 
university, and in 13 13 entered the order of the 
Minorites. After this he was sent by the general of 
his order to Rheims, where he applied himself to the 
study of medicine, and taught philosophy for seven 
or eight years. In 1322 he removed to Mechlin 
in Brabant, and after teaching theology in that city 
for five and twenty years, died in 1347. 

Bassol's only work was one entitled Commentaria 
sen Lectur<v in Quatiior Libros Sententiarum, to 
which were attached some miscellaneous papers on 
philosophy and medicine. The book was published 
in folio at Paris, in 1 51 7. Bassol was known by the 
title Doctor Ordinatissimns, or tlie Most Methodical 
Doctor, on account of the clear and accurate method 
in which he lectured and composed. The fashion 
of giving such titles to the great masters of the 
schools was then in its prime. Thus, Duns Scotus 
himself was styled Doctor .Subtilis, or the Subtle 
Doctor. St. Francis of Assis was called the Seraphic 
Doctor; Alexander Hales, the Irrefra;^able Doctor; 
Thomas Aquinas, the An;^elical Doctor; Hendricus 
Bonicollius, the .Solemn Doctor; Richard Middleton, 
the Solid Doctor; Francis Mayron, the Acute Doctor; 
Durandus a S. Porliano, the Most Resolute Doctor; 
Thomas Bredwardin, the Profound Doctor; Joannes 
Ruysbrokius, the Divine Doctor, and so forth; the 
title being in every case f()un<led upon some extrava- 
gant conception of the merit uf ilie jiarticular in- 
dividual, adopted by his contem])(jraries and disciples. 
In this extraordinary class of literati John Bassol, as 
implied by his soubriquet, shines conspicuous for 
order and method; yet v/e are told that his works 



contain most of the faults which are generally laid to 
the charge of the schoolmen. The chief of these is 
an irrational devotion to the philosophy of Aristotle, 
as expounded by Thomas Aquinas. In the early 
ages of modern philosophy, this most splendid exer- 
tion of the human mind was believed to be irrecon- 
cilable with the Christian doctrines; and at the very 
time when the Angelical Doctor wrote his commen- 
tary, it stood prohibited by a decree of Pope Gregory 
IX. The illustrious Thomas not only restored Aris- 
totle to favour, but inspired his followers with an 
admiration of his precepts, which, as already men- 
tioned, was not rational. Not less was their admira- 
tion of the "angelical" commentator, to whom it 
was long the fashion among them to offer an incense 
little short of blasphemy. A commentator upon an 
original work of Thomas Aquinas endeavours, in a 
prefatory discourse, to prove, in so many chapters, 
that he wrote his books not without the special 
infusion of the Spirit of God Almighty; that, in 
writing them, he received many things by revelation ; 
and that Christ had given anticipatory testimony 
to his writings. By way of bringing the works 
of St. Thomas into direct comparison with the Holy 
Scriptures, the same writer remarks, "that, as in 
the first general councils of the church, it was common 
to have the Bible unfolded upon the altar, so, in the 
last general council (that of Trent), St. Thomas' 
Simi was placed beside the Bible, as an inferior rule 
of Christian doctrine." Peter Labbe, a learned 
Jesuit, with scarcely less daring flattery, styles St. 
Thomas an angel, and says that, as he learned many 
things from the angels, so he taught the angels some 
things; that St. Thomas had said what St. Paul was 
not permitted to utter; and that he speaks of God as 
if he had "seen him, and of Christ as if he had been 
his voice. One might almost suppose that these 
learned gentlemen, disregarding the sentiment after- 
wards embodied by Gray, that flattery soothes not 
the cold ear of death, endeavoured by their praises 
to make interest with the "angelical" shade, not 
doubting that he was able to obtain for them a larger 
share of paradise than they could otherwise hope for. 
In the words of the author of the Refections on 
Learnittg, "the sainted Thomas, if capable of hear- 
ing these inordinate flatteries, must have blushed to 
receive them." 

Bassol was also characterized, in common with all 
the rest of the schoolmen, by a ridiculous nicety in 
starting questions and objections. Overlooking the 
great moral aim of what they were expounding, he 
and his fellows lost themselves in minute and subtle 
inquiries after physical exactness, started at every 
straw which lay upon their path, and measured the 
powers of the mind by grains and scruples. It must 
be acknowledged, in favour of this singular class of 
men, that they improved natural reason to a great 
height, and that much of what is most admired in 
modern philoso]ihy is only liorrowed from them. At 
the same time, their curiosity in raising and prosecut- 
ing frivolous objections to the Christian system is to 
be regretted as the source of much scejiticism and 
irreligion. To many of their arguments, ridicule 
only is due; and it would perhaps be impossible for 
the gravest to restrain a smile at the iUustrissimo 
mentioned by Cardan, one of whose arguments \\-as 
declared to be enough to puzzle all jiosterily, and 
who himself wept in his old age because he had 
become unable U> understand his own bo(;ks. 

The works of Bassol have Ijcen long forgotten, 
like those of his brethren; but it is not too nuich to 
say regarding this great man of a former day, that 
the same ])(jwers of mind which he s]ient upon the 
endless intricacies of the school philosophy, would 



ANDREW BAXTER JAMES BAYNE. 



99 



certainly, in another age and sphere, have tended to 
the permanent advantage of his fellow-creatures. 
He was so much admired by his illustrious preceptor, 
that that great man used to say, "If only Joannes 
Bassiolis be present, 1 have a sufficient auditory." 

BAXTER, Andrf.w, an ingenious moral and 
natural piiilosopher, was the son of a merchant in 
Old Aberdeen, and of Mrs. Elizabeth Eraser, a lady 
connected with some of the considerable families of 
that name in the north of Scotland. He was born 
at Old Aberdeen, in 1686 or 1687, and educated at 
the King's College, in his native city. His employ- 
ment in early life was that of a preceptor to young 
gentlemen; and among others of his pupils were 
Lord Gray, Lord Blantyre, and Mr. Hay of Dnim- 
melzier. In 1723, while resident at Dunse Castle, 
as preceptor to the last-mentioned gentleman, he is 
known, from letters which passed between him and 
Henry Home, afterwards Lord Kaimes, to have 
been deeply engaged in both physical and meta- 
physical disquisitions. As Mr. Home's paternal 
seat of Kaimes was situated within a few miles of 
Dunse Castle, the similarity of their pursuits appears 
to have brought them into an intimate friendship and 
correspondence. This, however, was soon after- 
wards broken off. Mr. Home, who was a mere 
novice in physics, contended with Mr. Baxter that 
motion was necessarily the result of a succession of 
causes. The latter endeavoured, at first with much 
patience and good temper, to point out the error of 
this argument; but, teased at length with what he 
conceived to be sophistry purposely employed by his 
antagonist to show his ingenuity in throwing doubts 
on principles to which he himself annexed the 
greatest importance, and on which he had founded 
what he believed to be a demonstration of those 
doctrines most material to the happiness of mankind, 
he finally interrupted the correspondence, saying, 
"I shall return you all your letters; mine, if not 
already destroyed, you may likewise return; we shall 
burn them and our philosophical heats together." 

About this time, Mr. Baxter married Alice Mabane, 
daughter of a respectable clerg\'man in Berwickshire. 
A few years afterwards he published his great work, 
entitled Afi Inquiry into the Nature of the Human 
Soul, wherein its Immateriality is evinced from the 
Principles of Reaso7i and Philosophy. This work 
was originally without date; but a second edition 
appeared in 1737, and a third in 1745. It has been 
characterized in the highest terms of paneg}Tic by 
Bishop Warburton. "He who would see," says 
this eminent prelate, "the justest and precisest 
notions of God and the soul, may read this book; 
one of the most finished of the kind, in my humble 
opinion, that the present times, greatly advanced in 
true philosophy, have produced." The object of the 
treatise is to prove the immateriality, and conse- 
quently the immortality, of the soul, from the acknow- 
ledged principle of the vis inertiie of matter. His 
argument, according to the learned Lord Wood- 
houselcc, is as follows: "There is a resistance to any 
change of its j^resent state, either of rest or motion, 
essential to matter, which is inconsistent with its 
p(isses>ing any active power. Those, therefore, 
which have been called the natural powers of matter, 
as gravity, attraction, elasticity, repulsion, are not 
]iowers implanted in matter, or jiossible to be made 
inherent in it, but are impulses or forces impressetl 
upon it ai> extra. The consequence of the want of 
active power in matter is, that all those eflects com- 
monly ascribed to its active jxnvers must be produced 
upon it by an immaterial bt^'ing. Hence we discover 
the necessity for the agency uf a constant and universal 



Providence in the material world, who is GoD; and 
hence we must admit the necessity of an immaterial 
mover in all spontaneous motions, which is the soul; 
for that which can arbitrarily effect a change in the 
present state of matter, cannot be matter itself, which 
resists all change of its present state: and since this 
change is effected by willing, that thing which wills 
in us is not matter, but an immaterial substance. From 
these fundamental propositions, the author deduces, 
as consequences, the necessary immortality of the 
soul, as being a simple uncompounded substance, 
and thence incapable of decay, and its capacity of 
existing, and being conscious, when separated from 
the body." In 1741, leaving his family in Berwick, 
he went abroad with his pupil Mr. Hay, and resided 
for several years at Utrecht. In the course of various 
excursions which he made through Holland, France, 
and Germany, he was generally well received by the 
literati. He returned to Scotland in 1747, and, till 
his death, in 1750, resided constantly at Whittingham, 
in East Lothian, a seat of his pupil Mr. Hay. His 
latter works were Matho, sive Cosmotheoria puerilis, 
Dialogits, a piece designed for the use of his pupil ; 
and An Appendix to his Inquiry into the Nature of 
the Human Soul, wherein he endeavoured to remove 
some difficulties which had been started against his 
notions of the vis inertia of matter by Maclaurin, in 
his Account of Sir Isaac A^ewton^s Philosophical Dis- 
coveries. In 1779 the Rev. Dr. Duncan of South 
Warnborough published The Evidence of Reason in 
proof of the Immortality of the Soul, independent on 
the more abstruse inquiry into the nature of matter 
and spirit — collected from the MSS. of the late Mr. 
Baxter. 

The learning and abilities of Mr. Baxter are 
sufficiently displayed in his writings, which, however, 
were of more note in the literary world during his 
own time than now. He was very studious, and 
sometimes sat up whole nights reading and writing. 
His temper was cheerful; he was a friend to innocent 
merriment, and of a disposition truly benevolent. 
In conversation he was modest, and not apt to make 
much show of the extensive knowledge he possessed. 
In the discharge of the several social and relative 
duties of life, his conduct was exemplar)-. He had 
the most reverential sentiments of the Deity, of 
whose presence and immediate support he had 
always a strong impression upon his mind. He paid 
a strict attention to economy, though he dressed 
elegantly, and was not parsimonious in his other 
expenses. It is known also that there were several 
occasions on which he acted with remarkable disin- 
terestedness; and so far was he from courting prefer- 
ment, that he repeatedly declined offers of that kind 
that were made to him, on the condition of his taking 
orders in the Church of England. The French. 
German, and Dutch languages were spoken by him 
with much ease, and the Italian tolerably; and he 
read and wrote them all, together with the Spanish. 
His friends and correspondents were numerous and 
respectable; among them are particularly mentionetl 
Mr. I'ointz, preceptor to the Duke of Cumberland, 
and Bishop ^Varburton. 

BAYTJE, OR BAINE. Jamk?, A.M., a divine <.f 
some note, was tlie son of the Kcv. Mr. ]''r.\nc. 
minister of Bonhill in Dumbartonshire, and ^*T^s 
bom in 1710. His education, coninu-nccd at the 
]iarish school, was completed at the university d 
Glasgow, and in due time he became a licen>ed 
preacher of the Established Chr.reh nf .<c<'i!ai!.!. 
In consequence of the respectability oi his fatlier. 
and his own talents as a ] 'readier, he w.ts ]>resenled 
l)v the Duke of MoiUrusc to the clnirch ot" Killeam, 



JAMES BAYNE DAVID BEATOX. 



the parish adjoining that in which his father had 
long ministered the gospel, and memorable as the 
birthplace of Buchanan. In this sequestered and 
tranquil scene he spent many years, which he often 
referred to in after-life as the happiest he had ever 
known. He here married Miss Potter, daughter 
of Dr. Michael Potter, professor of divinity in the 
Glasgow university, by whom he had a large family. 
His son, the Rev. James Bayne, was licensed in 
the Scottish Establishment, but afterwards received 
episcopal ordination, and died in the exercise of that 
profession of faith at Alloa. 

The reputation of Mr. Bayne as a preacher soon 
travelled far beyond the rural scene to which his 
ministrations were confined. His people, in allusion 
to the musical sweetness of his voice, honoured him 
with the poetical epithet of "the swan of the west." 
He was appointed to a collegiate charge in the High 
Church of Paisley, where his partner in duty was 
the celebrated Mr. Wotherspoon, afterwards presi- 
dent of the Nassau Hall College, Princetown, New 
Jersey. The two colleagues, however, did not co- 
operate harmoniously, although both enjoyed a high 
degree of popularity. Mr. Bayne displayed great 
public spirit during his connection with the Estab- 
lished Church, defending her spiritual liberties and 
independence in the church courts, and offering a 
determined opposition to the policy of the moderate 
or ruling party. The deposition of Mr. Thomas 
Gillespie of Camock, the founder of the Relief 
church, made a powerful impression on his mind, 
and undoubtedly had a strong influence in inducing 
him to resign his pastoral charge in Paisley. But 
the immediate cause of that resolution was a keen 
dispute which took place in the kirk-session of his 
parish, respecting the appointment of a session-clerk. 
The session contested the right of appointment with 
the town-council; the whole community took an in- 
terest in the dispute; and the case came at last to be 
litigated in the court of session, which decided in 
favour of the town-council. Unhappily, Mr. Bayne 
and his colleague took opposite sides in this petty 
contest, and a painful misunderstanding was produced 
betwixt them, followed by consequences probably 
affecting the future destinies of both. Mr. Bayne 
refers to these differences in his letter of resignation, 
addressed to the Presbytery, dated loth February, 
1766:— "They (the Presbytery) know not how far 
I am advanced in life, who see not that a house of 
worship, so very large as the High Church, and 
commonly so crowded too, must be very unequal to 
my strength; and this burden was made more heavy 
by denying me a session to assist me in the common 
concerns of the parish, which I certainly had a title 
to. But the load became quite intolerable, when, 
by a late unhappy process, the just and natural right 
of the common session was wrested from us, which 
drove away from acting in it twelve men of excellent 
character." .Mr. Bayne joined the Relief church, 
then in its infancy, having, even whilst in the Ivstab- 
lishment, held ministerial communion with Mr. 
Simpson, minister of Bellshill congregation, the first 
Relief church in the west of Scotland. In his letter 
of resignation already quoted, Mr. Bayne assured 
his former brethren that the change of his condition, 
and the charge he had accepteil, would make no 
change in his creed, nor in his principles (jf Chris- 
tian and ministerial communion — "Nay (he adds), 
none in my cordial regard to the constitution and 
interests of the Church of Scotland, which I solemnly 
engaged to support some more than thirty years ago, 
and hope to do so while I live. At the same time 
I abhor persecution in every form, and that abuse 
of church power of late, which to me appears incon- 



sistent with humanity, with the civil interests of the 
nation, and destructive of the ends of our office as 
ministers of Christ." On the 24th December, Mr. 
Bayne accepted a call to become minister of the 
College Street Relief Church, Edinburgh, and his 
induction took place on the 13th February, 1766, 
three days after his resignation of his charge in 
Paisley. As his demission fell to be adjudicated 
upon by the General Assembly, in May of that year, 
his name remained for the present upon the roll of 
the Establishment, and so little did he yet consider 
himself separated from the communion of that church, 
that when the half-yearly sacrament of the Lord's 
supper came round in Edinburgh, soon after his 
settlement, after preaching in his own church in the 
forenoon, he went over in the afternoon, at the head 
of his congregation, to the New Greyfriars' Church, 
and joined in the ordinance with the congregation 
of the Rev. Dr. Erskine. At the Assembly in May, 
Mr. Bayne, in obedience to a citation, appeared at 
the bar, and was declared to be no longer a minister 
of the Church of Scotland, and all clergymen of that 
body were prohibited from holding ministerial com- 
munion with him. Mr. Bayne defended the course 
he had taken in a review of the proceedings of the 
Assembly,' entitled Memoirs of Modern Church Ke- 
formation, or tht History of the General Assembly, 
1 766, and occasional reflections upon the proceedings 
of said Assembly; with a brief account and vindication 
of the Presbytery of Relief by James Bayne, A.M., 
minister of the gospel at Edinburgh. He denounces, 
with indignant severity, the injustice of his having 
been condemned by the Assembly without a libel, 
merely for having accepted a charge in another 
church, "in which (says he), I presumed, they could 
find nothing criminal; for often had ministers resigned 
their charge upon different accounts, and justifiable; 
nay, some have given it up for the more entertaining 
and elegant employ of the stage, who were not called 
in question or found delinquents." This was a pal- 
pable hit at Home, the author of Douglas, who sat 
in the Assembly as a ruling elder, to aid Dr. Robert- 
son in punishing Bayne. 

After a ministry of sixty years, Mr. Bayne died 
at Edinburgh, on the 17th January, 1790, in his 
eightieth year. He was twenty-four years minister 
of the College Street Relief congregation, Edinburgh. 
His popularity as a preacher, his talents for ecclesi- 
astical affairs, his acquirements as a scholar and a 
theologian, and his sound judgment and weight of 
character, gave him great influence; and it was 
mainly to his large and enlightened views that the 
Relief church was indebted for the position to which 
it attained, even during his lifetime, as well as for 
retaining, till it was finally merged in the United 
Presbyterian Church, the catholic constitution on 
which it had been founded by Gillespie and Boston. 
Mr. Bayne was an uncompromising ojiponent of 
whatever he considered to be a violation of public 
morality. In 1770 he published a discourse, entitled 
The Theatre Licentious and Pen>ertcd, administering 
a stem rebuke to Mr. Samuel Foote for his Minor, 
a drama in which the characters of Whiteficld and 
other zealous ministers were held up to jirofane 
ridicule. The dramatist considered it necessary to 
reply to Mr. Bayne's strictures, in an Apology for 
the Minor, in a letter to the Rev. Mr. Bayne, rest- 
ing his defence upon the plea that he only satirized 
the vices and follies of religious pretenders. A 
volume of Mr. Bayne's discourses was published in 
1778. 

BEATON, OR BEATOUN, (Cardinai.) Davip, 
who held the rectory of Campsie, the abbacy of 



DAVID BEATON. 



Aberbrothick, the bishopric of Mirepoix in France, 
the cardinalship of St. Stephen in Monte Ccelio, 
and the chancellorship of Scotland, and who was 
the chief of the Roman Catholic party in Scotland 
in the earlier age of the Reformation, was descended 
from an ancient family in Fife, possessed of the 
barony of Halfour, and was born in the year 1494. 
He was educated at the college of St. Andrews, 
where he completed his courses of polite literature 
and philosophy, but was sent afterwards to the uni- 
versity of Paris, where he studied divinity for several 
years. Entering into holy orders, he had the rectory 
of Campsieand the abbacy of Aberbrothick l)estowed 
upon him by his uncle James Beaton, Archbishop 
of .St. Andrews, who retained one-half of the rents 
of the abbacy to his own use. Possessing good 
abilities and a lively fancy, David Beaton became a 
great favourite with James V., who in 1519 sent 
him as his ambassador to the court of France. 
He returned to Scotland in 1525, and, still growing in 
the king's favour, was in 1528 made lord privy-seal. 

In the year 1533 he was again sent on a mission 
to the French court. Beaton on this occasion was 
charged to refute certain calumnies which it was 
supposed the English had circulated against his 
countrymen, to study the preservation of the ancient 
league between the two nations, and to conclude a 
treaty of marriage between James and Magdalene, 
the daughter of Francis I. If unsuccessful in any 
of these points, he was to repair to Flanders, for the 
purpose of forming an alliance with the emperor. 
In every part of his embassy, Beaton seems to have 
succeeded, the marriage excepted, which was delayed 
on account of the declining health of Magdalene. 
I low long Beaton remained at the French court at 
this time has not been ascertained; but it is certain 
that he was exceedingly agreeable to Francis, who, 
perceiving his great abilities, and aware of the in- 
fluence he possessed over the mind of the Scottish 
king, used every expedient to attach him to the in- 
terests of France. 

In 1536, finding a second embassy also unsuccess- 
ful. King James set sail for France, and proceeded 
to the court, where he was most cordially welcomed; 
and his suit being agreeable to Magdalene herself, 
Francis consented to their union, which was cele- 
brated on the 1st of January, 1537. i)n the 28th 
of May following, the royal pair landed in Scotland, 
being conveyed by a French fleet. Magdalene was 
received by the Scots with the utmost cordiality; 
but she was already far gone in a decline, and died 
on the 7th of July following, to the inexpressible 
grief of the whole nation. It was on the death of 
this queen that mournings were first worn in Scot- 
land. James, however, in expectation of this event, 
had fixed his attention upon Mary of Cluise, widow 
of the Duke of I.ongueville; and Beaton, who by 
this time had returned to Scotland, was despatched 
immedi.itely to bring her over. On this occasion 
he was appointed by the King of France Bishop of 
Mirepoix, to whicli see he was consecrated Decem- 
ber 5th, 1537. The following year he was, at the 
rccommcnd.ition of the French king, elevated to the 
cardinalship by the pope, which was followed by a 
grant on the part of the French king for services 
already done, and for those which he might after- 
wards ilo to his niajoty, allowing his heirs to succeed 
to his estate in France, though the said heirs should 
be born and live within the kingdom of Scotland. 
The cardinal returned to Scotland with Mary of 
Ciuise, and shortly after obtained the entire man.ige- 
mcnt of the diocese and primacy of St. .Vndrews, 
under his uncle James Beaton, whom he eventually 
sacc-'cded in that office. 



A severe persecution was commenced at this time 
by the cardinal against all who were suspected of 
favouring the reformed doctrines. Many were forced 
to recant, and two persons, Norman Gourlay and 
David Straiton, were burned at the Rood of Green- 
side, near Edinburgh. Being appointed by the pope 
legattis a latere, Beaton held a conclave of noble- 
men, prelates, and church dignitaries at St. An- 
drews, and harangued them from his chair of state 
on the dangers that hung over the true catholic 
church from the proceedings of King Henry in Eng- 
land, and particularly from the great increase of 
heresy in Scotland, where it had found encourage- 
ment even in the court of the king. As he proceeded, 
he denounced .Sir John Borthwick, provost of Lin- 
lithgow, as one of the most industrious incendiaries, 
and caused him to be cited before them for main- 
taining that the pope had no greater authority over 
Christians than any other bishop or prelate — that 
indulgences granted by the pope were of no force or 
effect, but devised to amuse the people and deceive 
poor ignorant souls — that bishops, priests, and other 
clergymen may lawfully marry — that the heresies 
commonly called the heresies of England and their 
new liturgy were to be commended by all good 
Christians, and to be embraced by them — that the 
people of Scotland are blinded by their clergy, and 
profess not the true faith — that churchmen ought 
not to enjoy any temporalities — that the king ought 
to convert the superfluous revenues of the church 
unto other pious uses — that the Church of Scotland 
ought to be reformed after the same manner as that 
of England was — that the canon law was of no force, 
being contrary to the law of God — that the orders 
of friars and monks should be abolished, as had been 
done in England — that he had openly called the 
pope a .Simoniac, because he had sold spiritual 
things — that he had read heretical books and the 
New Testament in English, with treatises written 
by Melancthon, CEcolampadius, and other heretics, 
and that he not only read them himself, but distri- 
buted them among others — and lastly, that he openly 
disowned the authority of the Roman see. These 
articles being read, and Sir John neither appear- 
ing in person nor by proxy, he was set down as a 
confessed heretic, and condemned as an heresiarch. 
His goods were ordered to be confiscated and him- 
self burned in effigy, if he could not be apprehended, 
and all manner of persons forbidden to entertain or 
converse with him, under the pain of excommunica- 
tion or forfeiture. This sentence was passed against 
him on the 28th of May, and executed the same day 
so far as was in the power of the court, his effig)' 
being burned in the market-place of St. Andrews, and 
two days after at Edinburgh. This was supposed 
by many to be intended as a gratifying spectacle to 
Mary of Guise, the new queen, who had only a short 
time before arrived from France. In the meantime, 
Sir John fled into England, where he was received 
with open arms by Henry VHI., by whom he was 
sent on an embassy to the Protestant princes of 
(iermany, for the purpose of forming with them a 
defensive league against the pope. Johnston, in his 
Heroes of Scotland, says that "John Borthwick, .i 
noble knight, was as much esteemed by King James 
V. for his exemplar and amiable ([ualitics, as he was 
detested by the order of the prie>thood on account 
of his true piety, for his unfeigned profession of which 
he was condemned; and, though absent, his tflcct-. 
confiscated, anti his effig}-, after beini; subjected t" 
various marks of ignomin}', burned.'' a, wc have 
above related; "this condemnation." Jiihn-t<jn 
adds, "he answered by a nio>t learned aj>olog)-, 
which mav vet be seen in the records of the martyrs 



DAVID BEATON. 



[Fox]; and having survived many years, at last died 
in peace in a good old age." 

During these events, Henry, anxious to destroy 
that interest which the French government had so 
long maintained in Scotland, sent into that kingdom 
the Bishop of St. David's with some books written 
in the vulgar tongue upon the doctrines of Chris- 
tianity, which he recommended to his nephew care- 
fully to peruse. James, who was more addicted to 
his amusements than to study, gave the books to be 
perused by some of his courtiers, who, being attached 
to the clerical order, condemned them as pestilent 
and heretical. There were, however, other matters 
proposed by this embassy than the books, though the 
clerical faction endeavoured to persuade the people 
that the books were all that was intended; for, 
shortly after, the same bishop, accompanied by 
William Howard, brother of the Duke of Norfolk, 
came to the king at Stirling so suddenly, that he was 
not aware of their coming till they were announced 
as arrived in the town. This, no doubt, was planned 
by Henry to prevent the intriguing of the priests and 
the French faction beforehand. His offers were so 
advantageous, that James acceded to them without 
scruple, and readily agreed to meet with his uncle 
Henry on an appointed day, when they were to 
settle all matters in dependence between them for 
the welfare of both kingdoms. Nothing could be 
more terrible to the clergy, of which Beaton was 
now confessedly the head in Scotland, than the 
agreement of the two kings; and they hastened to 
court from all quarters to weep over their religion, 
about to be betrayed by an unholy conference, which 
could not fail, they said, to end in the ruin of the 
kingdom. Having by these representations made 
a strong impression upon the king, they then bribed 
the courtiers who had the most powerful influence 
over him, to dissuade him from the promised journey, 
which they successfully did, and so laid the founda- 
tion of a war, the disastrous issue of which, preying 
upon the mind of James, brought him to an untimely 
end. 

In the whole of these transactions, Beaton, 
a zealous churchman and the hired tool of France, 
was the chief actor; and knowing that the king was 
l>oth covetous and needy, he overcame his scruples, 
by persuading the clergy to promise him a yearly 
subsidy of 30,000 gold crowns. As he had no de- 
sign, however, that the church should defray the 
cost, he pointed out the estates of those who rebelled 
against the authority of the pope and the king 
as proper subjects for confiscation, whereby there 
might he raised annually the sum of 100,000 crowns of 
gold. In order to attain this oljject, he reriuested that, 
for himself and his brethren, they might only be 
allowed to name, as they were precluded themselves 
from sitting in judgment in criminal Cases, a lord cliief- 
justice, before whom, were he once appointed, there 
could be neither difficulty in managing the process, 
nor delay in procuring judgment, since so many men 
hesitated not to read the books of the New and Old 
Testaments, and to treat the church and churchmen 
with contempt. This wicked counsel was complied 
with, and they nominated for this new court of in- 
quisition a judge ever\'way according to their own 
hearts, James Hamilton (a natural brother of the 
Karl of Arran), whom they had attached to their 
interests by large gifts, ancl who was willing to Ije 
reconcile<l to the king, whom he had lately offended, 
by any service, however cruel. 

The suspicions which the king entertained against 

' his nobility from this time forward were such as to 

]>aralyze his efforts whether for good or evil. The 

inroads of 'the English, too, occupied his whole 



attention, and the shameful overthrow of his army 
which had entered England by the Solway, threw 
him into such a state of rage and distraction, that he 
died at Falkland on the 13th of December, 1542, 
leaving the kingdom, torn by faction, and utterly 
defenceless, to his only surviving legitimate child, 
Mary, then no more than five days old. The sudden 
demise of the king, while it quashed the old projects 
of the cardinal, only set him upon forming new ones 
still more daring and dangerous. Formerly he had 
laboured to direct the movements of the king by 
humouring his passions, flattering his vanity, and 
administering to his vicious propensities; he now 
conceived that it would be easy for him to seize upon 
the government in the name of the infant queen. 
Accordingly, with the assistance of one Henry 
Balfour, a mercenary priest, whom he suborned, he 
is said to have forged a will for the king, in which 
he was himself nominated regent, with three of the 
nobility as his assessors or assistants. According to 
Knox, these were Argyle, Huntley, and Murray; but 
Buchanan, whom we think a very sufficient authority 
in this case, says that he also assumed as an assessor 
his cousin by the mother's side, the Earl of Arran, 
who was, after Mary, the next heir to the crown, but 
was believed to be poorly qualified for discharging 
the duties of a private life, and still less for directing 
the government of a kingdom. Aware of the danger 
that might arise from delay, the cardinal lost not 
a moment in idle deliberation. The will which he 
had forged he caused to be proclaimed at the cross 
of Edinburgh on the Monday immediately succeeding 
the king's death. 

Arran, had he been left to himself, would have 
peaceably acquiesced in the cardinal's arrangements. 
But his friends, the Hamiltons, incessantly urged 
him not to let such an occasion slip out of his hands. 
Hatred, too, to the cardinal, who, from his per- 
secuting and selfish spirit, was very generally detested, 
and the disgrace of living in bondage to a priest, 
procured them many associates. The near prospect 
which Arran now had of succeeding to the crown, 
must also have enlisted a number of the more wary 
and calculating politicians upon his side. But what 
was of still more consequence to him, Henry of 
England, who had carried all the principal prisoners 
taken in the late battle to London, marched them in 
triumph through that metropolis, and given them in 
charge to his principal nobility, no sooner heard of 
the death of the king than he recalled the captives 
to court, entertained them in the most friendly 
manner, and having taken a promise from each of 
them that they would promote as far as possible, 
without detriment to the public interests, or disgrace 
to themselves, a marriage between his son and the 
young queen, he sent them back to Scotland, where 
they arrived on the 1st of January, 1543. Along 
with the prisoners the Earl of Angus and his brother 
were restored to their country, after an exile of fifteen 
years, and all were received by the nation with the 
most joyful gratulations. It was in vain that the 
cardinal had already taken possession of the regency. 
Arran, by the advice of the laird of Grange, called 
an assembly of the nobility, and finding the will u]ion 
which the cardinal had assumed the regency forged, 
they set him aside and elected Arran in his jjlate. 
This was peculiarly grateful to a great proportif)n 
of the nobles and gentlemen, three hundred of 
whom, with Arran at their head, were found in a 
]>roscription list among the king's papers, furnished 
to him by the cardinal. Arran, it was well known, 
was friendly to the reformers, and his imbecility of 
mind being unknown, tlie greatest expectations were 
formed from the moderation of his character. In tl.e 



DAVID BEATON. 



103 



parliament that met in the month of March follow- 
ing, public affairs put on a much more promising 
appearance than could have been expected. The 
king of England, instead of an army, sent an am- 
bassador to negotiate a marriage between the young 
queen and his son, and a lasting peace upon the 
most advantageous terms. The cardinal, who saw 
in this alliance with Protestant England the downfall 
of his church in Scotland, opposed himself with the 
whole weight of the clergy, and all the influence of the 
queen-dowager, to everything like pacific measures, 
and that with so much violence, that he was, by the 
general consent of the house, shut up in a separate 
chamber while the votes were taken; after which 
everything was settled in the most amicable man- 
ner, and it was agreed that hostages should be sent 
into England for the fulfilment of the stipulated 
articles. 

The cardinal in the meantime was committed as 
a prisoner into the hands of Lord Seton, but was 
afterwards suffered to resume his own castle at St. 
Andrews. In the great confusion of public affairs 
that had prevailed for a number of years, trade had 
been at a stand, and now that a lasting peace seemed 
to be established, a number of vessels were sent to 
sea laden with the most valuable merchandise. 
Edinburgh itself fitted out twelve, and the other 
towns on the eastern coast in proportion to their 
wealth, all of them coasting the English shores, and 
entering their harbours with the most undoubt- 
ing confidence. Restored, however, to liberty, the 
cardinal strained every nerve to break up the arrange- 
ments that had been so happily concluded. He 
prevailed on a portion of the clergy to give all their 
own money, their silver plate, and the plate belong- 
ing to their churches; and aided by this money, with 
which he wrought upon the avarice and the poverty 
of the notiles and excited the clamours of the vulgar, 
who hated the very name of an English alliance, the 
cardinal soon found himself at the head of a formid- 
able party, which treated the English ambassador 
with the greatest haughtiness, in the hope of forcing 
him out of the country before the arrival of the 
day stipulated by the treaty with the regent for the 
delivery of the hostages. The ambassador, however, 
braved every insult till the day arrived, when he 
waited on the regent, and complained in strong terms 
of the manner in which he had been used, and 
demanded the fulfilment of the treaty. With respect 
to the affronts, the regent stated them to have been 
committed without his knowledge, and promised to 
punish tiie offenders. With regard to tlie hostages, 
however, he was obliged to confess, that, through 
tiie intrigiies of the cardinal, it was impossible for 
him to furnish them. The treaty being thus broken 
off, the noblemen who had been captives only a few 
months l>efore, ought, according to agreement, to 
h?-ve gone back into England, having left hostages to 
that effect. Wrought upon, however, by the cardinal 
and the clerg}-, tliey refused to redeem the faith they 
had pledged, and abandoned the friends they had 
left behind them to their fate. The only exception 
to this baseness was the Earl of Cassilis, who had 
left two brothers as hostages. Henry was so much 
plea>cd with this soHtan,- in>tance of g'ood faith, that 
he set him free along with his brothers, and sent him 
home loaded with gifts. He at the same time seized 
ujion all the Scottish vessels, a great number of 
which had been lately fitted out, and were at this 
time in tlie English harbours, confiscated the mer- 
chanrlise, and made the merchants and the mariners 
prisoners of war. This, while it atlded to the 
domestic miseries of Scotland, served also to fan the 
Jlames of dissension, which burned more fiercely than 



ever. The faction of the cardinal and the queen- 
dowager, entirely devoted to France, now sent am- 
bassadors thither to state their case as utterly 
desperate, unless they were supported from that 
country. In particular, they requested that Matthew 
Earl of Lennox might l>e ordered home, in order 
that they might set him up as a rival to the Hamiltons, 
who were already the objects of his hatred, on ac- 
count of their having waylaid and killed his father at 
Linlithgow. 

Arran laboured to strengthen his party by possess- 
ing himself of the infant queen, who had hitherto 
remained at Linlithgow in the charge of her mother 
the queen-dowager. The cardinal, however, was 
too wary to be thus circumvented, and occupied 
Linlithgow. Lennox, in the meantime, arrived from 
France, and having informed his friends of the ex- 
pectations he had been led to form, he proceeded to 
join the queen at Linlithgow, accompanied by up- 
wards of 4000 men. Arran, who had assembled all 
his friends in and about Edinburgh for the purpose 
of breaking through to the queen, now found himself 
completely in the back-ground, having, by the im- 
becility of his character, entirely lost the confidence 
of the people, and being threatened with a lawsuit 
by the friends of Lennox to deprive him of his 
estates, his father having married his mother, Janet 
Beaton, an aunt of the cardinal, while his first wife, 
whom he had divorced, was still alive. He now 
thought of nothing but making his peace with the 
cardinal. To this the cardinal was not at all averse, 
as he wished to make Arran his tool rather than his 
\ictim. Delegates of both parties met at Kirkliston, 
and agreed that the queen should be carried to 
Stirling; the Earl of Montrose, with the Lords 
Erskine, Lindsay, and Livingstone, being nominated 
to take the superintendence of her education. Having 
been put in possession of the infant queen, these 
noblemen proceeded with her direct to Stirling 
Castle, where she was solemnly inaugurated with the 
usual ceremonies on the 9th of Sept. 1543. The 
feeble regent soon followed, and, before the queen- 
mother and the principal nobility in the church of 
the Franciscans at Stirling, solemnly abjured the 
Protestant doctrines, by the profession of which alone 
he had obtained the favour of so large a portion of 
the nation, and for the protection of which he had 
been especially called to the regency. In this 
manner the cardinal, through the cowardice of the 
regent and the avarice of his friends, obtained all 
that he intended by the forged will, and enjoyed all 
the advantages of ruling, while all the odium that 
attended it attached to the imbecile Arran. There 
was yet, however, one thing wanting to establish the 
power of the cardinal — the dismissal of Lennox, who 
was now a serious obstacle in the way of both the 
cardinal and the queen-mother. They accordingly 
wrote to the King of France, entreating that, as 
Scotland had been restored to tranquillity l)y h.is 
liberality and assi>tance, he would secure his own 
good work and preserve the peace which he had 
procured, by recalling Lennox, without which it was 
impossible it could be lasting. 

Though they were thus secretly labouring 1 > 
undermine this nobleman, the queen-mother and xhc 
cardinal seemed to honour him before the ]'fO]':e, and 
by a constant succession of games and fc>t;\a!s tlie 
court presenteil one unbroken scene of gaiety. Day 
after day was sjient in tounianicnt-, and ni^l-.t .Tit'.r 
night in masquerade-^. In these fc-tivitio. ot %vh;c:i 
he was naturally f >r.ii, Lennox found a keen rival ;n 
James Hepburn, Earl of I'.othwell, w!io b.ad been 
banished by Janus V.. but had returned after his 
decease, and w.as now labouring tu cltri'.n the queen- 



I04 



DAVID BEATON. 



dowager in marriage by the same arts that Lennox 
fancied himself to be so successfully employing. 
Both these noblemen were remarkable for natural 
endowments, and in the gifts of fortune they were 
nearly upon a level. Finding himself inferior, how- 
ever, in the sportive strife of arms, Bothwell with- 
drew from the court in chagrin, leaving the field to 
his rival undisputed. Lennox now pressed his suit 
upon the queen, but learned with astonishment that 
she had no intention of taking him for a husband, 
and so far from granting him the regency, she had 
agreed with the cardinal to preserve it in the posses- 
sion of his mortal enemy Arran, whom they expected 
to be more pliant. Exasperated to the highest 
degree, Lennox swore to be amply revenged, but 
uncertain as yet what plan to pursue, departed for 
Dunbarton, where he was in the midst of his vassals 
and friends. Here he received 30,00x3 crowns, 
sent to increase the strength of his party by the 
King of France, who had not yet been informed of 
the real state of Scotland. Being ordered to con- 
sult with the queen-dowager and the cardinal in the 
distribution of this money, Lennox divided part of it 
among his friends, and part he sent to the queen. 
The cardinal, who had expected to have been in- 
trusted with the greatest share of the money, under 
the influence of rage and disappointment, persuaded 
the vacillating regent to raise an army and march to 
Glasgow, where he might seize upon Lennox and 
the money at the same time. Lennox, however, 
warned of their intentions, raised on the instant 
among his vassals and friends upwards of 10,000 
men, with whom he marched to Leith, and sent 
a message to the cardinal at Edinburgh, that he 
desired to save him the trouble of coming to fight 
him at Glasgow, and would give him that pleasure 
any day in the fields between Edinburgh and 
Leith. 

This was a new and unexpected mortification to 
the cardinal, who had gained only the regent and 
his immediate dependants, the great body of the 
people, who had originally given him weight and 
influence, having now deserted his standard. The 
cardinal, therefore, delayed coming to action from 
day to day under various pretexts, but in reality that 
he might have time to seduce the adherents of his 
rival, who could not be kept for any length of time 
together. Lennox, finding the war thus protracted, 
made an agreement with the regent, and, proceed- 
ing to Edinburgh, the two visited backwards and 
forwards, as if all their ancient animosity had been 
forgotten. Lennox, however, being advised of 
treacher)', withdrew in the night secretly to Glasgow, 
where he fortified, provisioned, and garrisoned the 
bishop's castle, but retired himself to Dunbarton. 
Here he learned that tlie Douglasses had agreed with 
the Hamiltons, and that, through the influence of 
his enemies, the French king was totally estranged 
from him. Archibald Douglas, Earl of Angus, and 
Robert ^L'lxwell, in the meantime, came to Glasgow 
with the view of mediating between Lennox and the 
regent. The regent, however, seized them both in 
a clandestine manner by the way, and made them 
close prisoners in the castle of Cadzow. While the 
two factions were thus harassing one another to the 
niin of their common country, Henry was demand- 
ing by letters satisfaction for the breach of treaties 
and the insults that had been heaped upon him in 
the person of his late ambassador. No notice being 
taken of these letters, Henry ordered a large arma- 
ment, which he had prepared to send against tlie 
coast of France, to proceed directly to Leith, and to 
visit Edinljurgh and the adjacent country with all 
the miseries of war; and with so much secrecy and 



celerity did this armament proceed, that the first 
tidings heard of it in Scotland was its appearance in 
Leith Roads. Ten thousand men were disembarked 
on the 4th May, 1544, a little above Leith, who took 
possession of that place without the smallest opposi- 
tion. The regent and the cardinal were both at the 
time in Edinburgh, and, panic-stricken at the appear- 
ance of the enemy, and still more at the hatred of the 
citizens, fled with the utmost precipitation towards 
Stirling. The English in the meantime marched 
towards Edinburgh, which they sacked and set on 
fire; then dispersing themselves over the neighbour- 
ing country, they burned towns, villages, and gentle- 
men's seats to the ground, and returning by Edin- 
burgh to Leith, embarked aboard their ships and set 
sail with a fair wind, carrying with them an immense 
booty, and with the loss on their part of only a few 
soldiers. 

The cardinal and his puppet the regent, in the 
meantime, raised a small body of forces in the north, 
with which, finding the English gone, they laid siege 
to the castle of Glasgow, which surrendered. l)e- 
feated at Glasgow, in a fresh encounter with the 
Hamiltons, the friends of Lennox refused to risk 
another engagement, but they insisted that he should 
keep the impregnable fortress of Dunbarton, where 
he might in safety await another revolution in the state 
of parties, which they prognosticated would take 
place in a very short time. Nothing, however, could 
divert him from his purpose; and, committing the 
charge of the castle of Dunbarton to George .Stirling, 
he sailed for England, where he was honourably en- 
tertained by King Henry, who settled a pension 
upon him, and gave him to wife his niece, Margaret 
Douglas, a princess in the flower of her age, and 
celebrated for every accomplishment becoming the 
female character. Arran was delighted to be de- 
livered from such a formidable rival; and in the next 
parliament, which met at Linlithgow, he succeeded 
in causing Lennox to be declared a traitor, and in 
having his estates and those of his friends confiscated. 

The English, during these domestic broils, made 
a furious inroad into Scotland, burned Jedburgh and 
Kelso, and laid waste the whole surrounding countiy. 
Thence proceeding to Coldingham, they fortifieil the 
church and the church-tower, in which they placed 
a garrison on retiring home. This garrison, from the 
love of plunder as well as to prevent supplies for a 
besieging army, wasted the neighbouring district to 
a wide extent. Turning their attention at last to 
general interests, the Scottish government, at the 
head of which was the cardinal, the queen-dowager, 
and the nominal regent Arran, issued a proclama- 
tion for the nobles and the more respectable of the 
commons to assemble armed, and with provisions 
for eight days, to attend the regent. Eight thousantl 
men were speedily assembled, and though it was the 
depth of winter, thf>y proceeded against the church 
and tower of Coldingliam without delay. When 
they had been before the place only one day and one 
niglit, the regent, informed that the English were 
advancing from Berwick, took horse, and with a few 
attendants galloped in the utmost haste to Dunbar. 
This inexplicable conduct threw the whole army ir.to 
confusion, and but for the bravery of one man, 
Archibald Douglas, Earl of Angus, the whole of their 
tents, lwgL;age, anel artillery would have ])een aban- 
doned to the enemy. But although An^us and a 
few of his friends, at the imminent hazard of their 
lives, saved the artillery and brought it in safety to 
Dunbar, the conduct of the army in general, and 
of the regent in particular, was pusillanimous in the 
extreme. The spirit of the nation sunk, and the 
courage of the enemy rose in proportion. Ralph 



DAVID BEATON'. 



105 



Ivers and Brian Latoun, the English commanders, 
overran, without opposition, the districts of Merse, 
Teviotdale, and Lauderdale, and the Forth only 
seemed to limit their victorious arms. Angus, 
who alone of all the Scottish nobility at this time 
gave any indication of public spirit, indignant at 
the nation's disgrace, and deeply affected with his 
own losses — for he had extensive estates both in 
Merse and Teviotdale — made a vehement complaint 
to the regent upon his folly, and the regent was 
roused to a momentary exertion, so that, in company 
with Angus, he set out the very next day for the 
borders, their whole retinue not exceeding 300 horse. 
The English, who were at Jedburgh to the number 
of 5000 men, having ascertained the situation and 
small number of their forces, marched on the instant 
to surprise them before their expected supplies should 
come up. The Scots, however, apprised of their in- 
tentions, withdrew to the neighbouring hills, whence, 
in perfect security, they watched the movements of 
their enemies, who, disappointed in not finding them, 
wandered about during the night in quest of such spoils 
as a lately ravaged town could supply, and with the 
returning dawn marched back to Jedburgh. The 
.Scots, now joined by Norman Leslie, a youth of great 
promise, son to the Earl of Rothes, and 300 men 
from Fife, withdrew to the hills which overlook the 
village of Ancrum, where they were joined by the 
laird of Balcleugh, an active and experienced com- 
mander, with a few of his vassals, who assured him 
that the remainder would follow immediately. By 
the advice of Balcleugh the troops were dismounted, 
and the horses, under the care of servants, sent to an 
adjoining hill. The army was formed in the hollow 
in the order of battle. The English, as had been 
anticipated, seeing the horses going over the hill, 
supposed the Scots to be in full retreat, and eager to 
prevent their escape, rushed after them, and ere they 
were aware fell upon the Scottish spears. Taken 
by surprise, the English troops, though they fought 
with great braver)', were thrown into disorder, and 
sustained a signal defeat, losing in killed and cap- 
tured upwards of 1300 men. The loss on the part 
of the .Scots was two men killed and a few wounded. 
By this victory and the alliance with France, 
Beaton now supposed himself fully established in the 
civil as well as the ecclesiastic management of the 
kingdom, and proceeded on a progress through the 
different provinces for the purpose of quieting the 
seditions which, as he alleged, had arisen in various 
places, but in reality to repress the Protestants, who, 
notwithstanding his having so artfully identified the 
cause of the Catholic religion with that of national 
feeling, had still been rapidly increasing. Carrying 
Arran along with him, as also the Earl of Arg)le, 
lord justice-general, Lord Borthwick, the Bishops of 
Orkney and Dunblane, Sec, he came to Perth, or, 
as it was then more commonly called, -St. Johnston, 
where several jiersons were summoned before him 
for disputing upon the sense of the .Scriptures, which, 
among all tnie Catholics, was a crime to be punished 
by the judge. Four unhappy men, accused of having 
eaten a goose up(}n a Friday, were condemned to be 
hangeil, which rigorous sentence was put into execu- 
tion. .\ woman, Helen Stork, for having refused 
to call u])on the \'irgin for assistance in her lal)our, 
was drowned, although again pregnant. A number 
of the burge>ses of the city, convicted or suspected 
(for in those days tliey were the same thing) of smaller 
peccadilloes, were banished from the city. He also 
deposed the Lord Ruthven from the provostry of 
the city, for being somewhat attached to the new 
opinions, an<l bestowed the office u;ion the laird of 
Kinfauns, a relation to tlie Lord Cray, who was 



neither supposed to be averse to the new religion 
nor friendly to the cardinal; but he hoped by this 
arrangement to lay a foundation for a quarrel between 
these noblemen, by which at least one of them would 
be cut off. This act of tyranny, by which the citizens 
were deprived of their privilege of choosing their 
own governor, was highly resented by them, as well 
as by the Lord Ruthven, whose family had held the 
place so long that they almost considered it to be 
hereditary in their family. The new provost, Kin- 
fauns, was urged by the cardin.al and his advisers 
to seize upon the government of the city by force, 
but the Lord Ruthven, with the assistance of the 
citizens, put him to the rout, and slew sixty of his 
followers. That Ruthven was victorious must have 
been a little mortifying to the cardinal; but as the 
victims were enemies of the church, the defeat was 
the less to be lamented. 

From St. Johnston the cardinal proceeded to 
Dundee, in order to bring to punishment the readers 
of the New Testament, which about this time began 
to be taught to them in the original Greek, of which 
the .Scottish priesthood knew so little that they held 
it forth as a new book written in a new language, 
invented by Martin Luther, and of such pernicious 
qualities, that whoever had the misfortune to look 
into it became infallibly tainted with deadly heresy. 
Here, however, their proceedings were interrupted 
by the approach of Lord Patrick Gray and the Earl 
of Rothes. These noblemen being both friendly to 
the Reformation, the cardinal durst not admit them 
with their followers into a town that was notorious 
for attachment to that cause above all the cities of 
the kingdom; he therefore sent the regent back to 
Perth, whither he himself also accompanied him. 
Even in Perth, however, he durst not meet them 
openly, and the regent requiring them to enter sepa- 
rately, they complied, and were both committed to 
prison. Rothes was soon dismissed, but Gray, whom 
the cardinal was chiefly afraid of, remained in con- 
finement a considerable time. The cardinal, having 
gone over as much of Angus as he found convenient 
at the time, returned to St. Andrews, carrying along 
with him a black friar, named John Rogers, who had 
been preaching the reformed doctrine in Angus. This 
individual he committed to the sea-tower of St. 
Andrews, where, it is alleged, he caused him to be 
privately murdered and thrown over the wall, gi\ing 
out that he had attempted to escape over it, and in 
the attempt had fallen and broke his neck. Keep- 
ing .Vrran still in his company, the cardinal set out 
to Edinburgh, where he convened an assembly of 
the clergy to devise means for putting a stop to the 
disorders that threatened the total ruin of the church. 
In this meeting it was proposed to allay the public 
clamours by taking measures for reforming the oj^en 
profligacy of the priests, which was the chief source 
of complaint. Their deliberations, however, were 
cut short by intelligence that George Wishart, the 
most eminent of the reformed preachers, was resid- 
ing with Cockburn of Ormiston, only about seven 
miles from Edinburgh. They calculated that, if tlicy 
could cut off this individual, they should perform an 
action more sers-iceable to the cause of the cluirch, 
and also one of much easier accomplishmeiu, tli.m 
reibrming the lives of the priests. .\ trooji «.if h.ir-e 
were immediately sent off to secure him. hut Lock-^ 
burn refusing to' deliver him, the cardinal himselt 
and the regent followed, blocking uji every av^'nue 
ti the house, so as to render the f-ca;'f i>f the 
reformer impossible. 'l"o prevent t!ie ttiu^ii'n ot 
blood, however, the Earl of Bntiiwcll wa- sent f >r, 
who pledged his faith to Cockl)um tl.at he would 
stand by "Wi-hart, and 1h.1t no harm ^huuld befall 



io6 



DAVID BEATON. 



him; upon which he was peaceably surrendered. 
Bothwell, however, wrought upon by the cardinal, 
and especially by the queen-mother, with whom, 
Knox observes, "he was then in the glonders," after 
some shuffling to save appearances, delivered his 
jirisoner up to the cardinal, who imprisoned him, 
first in the castle of Edinburgh, and soon after 
carried him to St. Andrews, where he was brought 
before the ecclesiastical tribunal, condemned ior 
heresy, and most cruelly put to death, as the reader 
will find related in another part of this work under 
the article Wishart. Arran, pressed by his friends, 
and perhaps by his own conscience, wrote to the 
cardinal to stay the proceedings till he should have 
time to inquire into the matter, and threatened him 
with the guilt of innocent blood. But the warning 
was in vain, and tiie innocent victim was only the 
more rapidly hurried to his end for fear of a rescue. 

This act of tyranny and murder was extolled by 
the clergy and their dependants as highly glorifying 
to God and honourable to the actor. The people in 
general felt far otherwise, and regarded the cardinal 
as a monster of cnielty and lust, whom it would be 
a meritorious action to destroy. Beaton was not 
ignorant of this general hatred, nor of the devices 
that were forming against him; but he supposed his 
power to be now so firmly established as to be 
beyond the reach of faction. In the meantime he 
thouglit it prudent to strengthen his interest, which 
was already great, by giving his daughter in marriage 
to the Master of Crawford. For this purpose he 
proceeded to Angus, where the marriage was cele- 
brated with almost royal splendour, the bride receiv- 
ing from her father the cardinal no less than four 
thousand marks of dowry. From these festivities 
he was suddenly recalled by intelligence that Henry 
of England was collecting a great naval force, with 
which he intended to annoy Scotland, and especially 
the coast of Fife. To provide against such an exi- 
gency, the cardinal summoned the nobility to attend 
him in a tour round the coast, where he ordered 
fortifications to be constructed, and garrisons placed 
in the most advantageous positions. In this tour he 
was attended by the blaster of Rothes, Norman Leslie, 
who had formerly been one of his friends, but had of 
late, from some private grudge, become cold towards 
him. Some altercation of course ensued, and they 
parted in mortal enmity. The cardinal determined 
secretly to take off or imprison Norman, with his 
friends the lairds of Grange, elder and younger. Sir 
James Learmont, provost of St. Andrews, and the 
laird of Raith, all whom he feared; and Norman 
resolved to slay the cardinal, be the consequences 
what they would. 

The cardinal was in the meantime in great haste 
to repair and strengthen his castle, upon which a 
large number of men were employed almost night 
and day. The conspirators having lodged themselves 
secretly in .St. Andrews on tiie night of May the 28th, 
1546, were, ere the dawn of the next morning, assem- 
bled to the numlier of ten or twelve persons in the 
neighbourhood of the castle, and the gates being 
opened to let in the workmen with their building 
materials, Kirkaldy of Grange entered, and with him 
six persons, who held a jiarley with the porter. 
Norman Leslie and his con^.pany, having then entered, 
f)assefl to the middle of the court. Lastly came 
John Leslie and four men witli him, at whose a]ipear- 
ance the porter, susjjccting some design, attcm]>ted 
to lift the drawbridge, but was prevented by Leslie, 
who leaped upon it, seized the keys, and threw the 
janitor into the ditch. The place thus secured, tlie 
workmen, to the number of a hundred, ran off the 
walls, and were put forth at the wicket gate unhurt. 



Kirkaldy then took charge of the privy postern, the 
others going through the different chambers, from 
which they ejected upwards of fifty persons, who were 
quietly permitted to escape. The cardinal, roused 
from his morning slumbers by the noise, threw up 
his window and asked what it meant. Being answered 
that Norman Leslie had taken his castle, he ran to 
the postern, but finding it secured, returned to his 
chamber, drew his two-handed sword, and ordered 
his chamberlain to barricade the door. In the mean- 
time, John Leslie demanded admittance, but did not 
gain it till a chimneyful of burning coals was brought 
to bum the door, when the cardinal or his chamber- 
lain (it is not known which) threw it open. Beaton, 
who had in the meantime hidden a box of gold 
under some coals in a corner of the room, now sat 
down in a chair, crying, "I am a priest, I am a priest; 
you will not slay me." But he was now in the hands 
of men to whom his priestly character was no recom- 
mendation. John Leslie, according to hisvow, struck 
him twice with his dagger, and so did Peter Carmi- 
chael; but James Melville, perceiving them to be in 
a passion, withdrew them, saying, "This work and 
judgment of God, although it be secret, ought to be 
gone about with gravity." Then, admonishing the 
cardinal of his wicked life, particularly his shedding 
the blood of that eminent preacher, Mr. George 
Wishart, Melville struck him thrice through with a 
stog [or short] sword, and he fell, exclaiming, "F^e, 
fie, I am a priest; all's gone I" Before this time the 
inhabitants of St. Andrews were apprised of what 
was going on, and began to throng around the castle, 
exclaiming, "Have ye slain my Lord Cardinal? 
What have ye done with my Lord Cardinal?" As 
they refused to depart till they saw him, his dead 
body was hung out in a sheet by the assassins at the 
same window from which he had but a short time 
before witnessed the burning of Mr. George Wishart. 
Having no opportunity to bury the body, they after- 
wards salted it, wrapped it in lead, and consigned it 
to the ground floor of the sea-tower, the very place 
where he was said to have caused Rogers the preach- 
ing friar to be murdered. 

In this manner fell Cardinal David Beaton, in the 
height of prosperity, and in the prime of life, for he 
had only reached the fifty-second year of his age. 
His death was deeply lamented by his own party, to 
whom it proved an irreparable loss, and the authors 
of it were regarded by them as sacrilegious assassins; 
but by numbers, who, on account of difference in 
religion, were in dread of their lives from his craelty, 
and by others who were disgusted by his insufferable 
arrogance, they were regarded as the restorers of 
their country's liberties, and many did not hesitate 
to hazard their lives and fortunes along with ihcm. 
Whatever opinion may be formed regarding the 
manner of his death, there can be only one regarding 
its effects; the Protestant faith, which had quailed 
before his powerful intellect and persecuting arm, 
from this moment began to prosper in the land. It 
is ])robable, as his enemies alone have been his his- 
torians, that the traits of his character, and even 
the tone and bearing of many of his actions, have 
l)cen to some degree exaggerated; yet there seems 
abundant jiroof of his sensuality, his cruelty, and his 
total disregard of princijile in his exertions for the 
])reservation of the Romish faith. Nothing, on the 
other hand, Init that barbarism of the times which 
characterizes all Beaton'spolicy, as well as hisactions, 
could extenuate the foul deed by which he was re- 
moved from the world, or the unseemly sym])athy 
which the reforming party in general manifested to- 
wards its pcrjjctrators. As a favour.able view of his 
character, and at the same time a fine specimen of 



DAVID BEATON ^JAMES BEATON. 



107 



old English composition, we extract the following 
from the supplement to Dempster: — 

"It frequently happens that the^ame great quali- 
ties of mind which enable a man to distinguish him- 
self by the splendour of his virtues are so overstrained 
or corrupted as to render him no less notorious for 
his vices. Of this we have many instances in ancient 
writers, but none by which it is more clearly displayed 
tlian in the character of the cardinal archbishop of 
St. Andrews, David Beaton, who, from his very child- 
hood, was e.xtremely remarkable, and whose violent 
death had this in it singular, that his enemies knew 
no way to remove him from his absolute authority 
but that [of assassination]. When he was but ten 
years of age, he spoke with so much ease and gravity, 
with so much good sense and freedom from affectation, 
as surprised all who heard him. When he was little 
more than twenty, he became known to the Duke of 
Albany and to the court of France, where he trans- 
acted affairs of the greatest importance, at an age 
when others begin to become acquainted with them 
only in books. Before he was thirty he had merited 
the confidence of the regent, the attention of the 
French king, and the favour of his master, so that 
they were all suitors to the court of Rome in his 
behalf. He was soon after made lord privy-seal, 
and appointed by act of parliament to attend the 
young king, at his majesty's own desire. Before he 
attained the forty-fifth year of his age he was Bishop 
of Mirepoix in France, Cardinal of the Roman Church, 
Archbishop of St. Andrews, and Primate of Scotland, 
to which high dignities he added, before he was fifty, 
those of lord high-chancellor, and legate a latere. 
1 1 is behaviour was so taking, that he never addicted 
himself to the service of any prince or person but he 
aljsolutely obtamed their confidence; and this power 
he had over the minds of others he managed with 
so much discretion, that his interest never weak- 
ened or decayed. He was the favourite of the regent, 
Duke of Albany, and of his pupil James V., as long 
as they lived; and the French king and the governor 
of Scotland equally regretted his loss. He was inde- 
fatigable in business, and yet managed it with great 
ease. He understood the interests of the courts of 
Rome, France, and Scotland better than any man of 
his time; and he was perfectly acquainted with the 
temper, influence, and weight of all the nobility in 
his own country. In time of danger he showed great 
prudence and steadiness of mind, and in his highest 
prosperity discovered nothing of vanity or giddiness. 
He was a zealous churchman, and thought severity 
the only weapon that could combat heresy. He 
loved to live magnificently, though not profusely; for 
at the time of his death he was rich, and yet had 
provided plentifully for his family. But his vices 
were many, and his vices scandalous. He quarrelled 
with the old Archbishop of Glasgow in his own city, 
and pushed this quarrel so far that their men fought 
in the very church. His ambition was boundless, for 
he took into his hands the entire management of the 
affairs of the kingdom, civil and ecclesiastical, and 
treated t!ie Knglisli ambassador as if he had been 
a sovereign i^rince. He made no scruple of sow- 
ing discord among his enemies, that he might reap 
security from tiieir disputes. His jealousy of the 
governor [.\nan] was such, that he kept his eldest 
son as a hostage in his house, umler pretence of tak- 
ing care of liis education. In point of chastity he 
was very deficient; for, thougli we should set aside as 
calumnies many of those things wliicli his enemies 
have reported of his intrigues, yet the posterity he 
left behind him plainly proves tliat he violated those 
vows, to gratify liis jiassions. which he obliged others 
to hold sacred on tlie penalty of their lives. In 



a word, had his probity been equal to his parts, had 
his virtues come up to his abilities, his end had been 
less fatal, and his memory without blemish. As it 
is, we ought to consider him as an eminent instance 
of the frailty of the brightest human faculties, and 
the instability of what the world calls fortune." 

He wrote, according to Dempster, Memoirs of his 
aivn Embassies, A Treatise of Jeter's Primacy, and 
Letters to Several Persons. 

BEATON, James, uncle to the preceding, and 
himself an eminent prelate and statesman, was a 
younger son of John Beaton of Balfour, in Fife, and 
of Mary Boswell, daughter of the Laird of Balmouto. 
Having been educated for the church, he became, in 
1503, provost of the collegiate church of Bothwell, 
by the favour, it has been almost necessarily supposed, 
of the house of Douglas, who were patrons of the 
establishment. His promotion was very rapid. In 
1504 he was made abbot of the rich and important 
abbacy of Dunfermline, which had previously been 
held by a brother of the king; and in 1505, on the 
death of his uncle, Sir David Beaton, who had 
hitherto been his chief patron, he received his office 
of high treasurer, and became, of course, one of the 
principal ministers of state. On the death of Vaus, 
Bishop of Galloway, in 1508, James Beaton was 
placed in that see, and next year he was translated to 
the archi-episcopate of Glasgow. He now resigned 
the treasurer's staff, in order that he might devote 
himself entirely to his duties as a churchman. While 
Archbishop of Glasgow, he busied himself in what 
were then considered the most pious and virtuous 
of offices, namely, founding new altarages in the 
cathedral, and improving the accommodations of the 
episcopal palace. He also entitled himself to more 
lasting and rational praise by such public acts as the 
building and repairing of bridges within the regality 
of Glasgow. Upon all the buildings, both sacred 
and secular, erected by him, were carefully blazoned 
his armorial bearings. During all the earlier part of 
his career, this great prelate seems to have lived on the 
best terms with the family of Douglas, to which he 
must have been indebted for his first preferment. In 
1515, when it became his duty to consecrate the 
celebrated Gavin Douglas as Bishop of Dunkeld, he 
testified his respect for the family by entertaining the 
poet and all his train in the most magnificent manner 
at Glasgow, and defraying the whole expenses of his 
consecration. Archbishop Beaton was destined to 
figure very prominently in the distracted period 
wliich ensued upon the death of James IV. .\s too 
often happens in the political scene, the violence of 
faction broke up his old attachment to the Douglasses. 
The Earl of Angus, chief of that house, having mar- 
ried the widow of the king, endeavoured, against ilie 
general sense of the nation, to obtain the supreme 
power. Beaton, who was elevated by the regent 
Albany to the high office of lord-chancellor, and nj-- 
pointed one of the governors of the kingdom durir.g 
his absence in France, attached himself to tlie o; pu- 
site faction of the Hamiltons, under tlie F.arl of Arran. 
On the 29th of April, 1520, a convention having iitcn 
called to compose the differences of the two ] artx-. 
the Hamiltons appeared in military gui-e. and ,-ecii.vl 
prepared to vindicate tiieir supreni.icy with the s^\ ; i. 
Beaton, their chief counsellor, sat in iris liou-j a: 
the bottom of the Blackfriars' Wynd. ' with .ir:r.ui:r 
undcr his robes, ready, apparently, to liavc joined t!ic 
forces of the Hamiltons. in tlie event ol" .t nu.-rrel. 
In this crisis (iavin Douglas was (loputci hy h..- 
nephcw the Karl of Angus to remonstrate with t:.e 
archbishop ngain-t the hosti^ej^rei-.a ration' of ii.s 

' La.--.c. 



loS 



JAMES BEATON. 



party. Beaton endeavoured to gloss over the matter, 
and concluded with a solemn asseveration upon his 
conscience that he knew not of it. As he spoke, he 
struck his hand upon his breast, and caused the mail 
to rattle under his gown. Douglas replied, with 
a cutting equivoque, "Methinks, my lord, your con- 
science clatters," — -as much as to say, your conscience 
is unsound, at the same time that the word might 
mean the undue disclosure of a secret. In the en- 
suing conflict which took place upon the streets, the 
Hamiltons were worsted, and Archbishop Beaton 
had to take refuge in the Blackfriars' Church. Being 
found there by the Douglasses, he had his rochet 
torn from his back, and would have been slain on the 
spot but for the interposition of the Bishop of Dun- 
keld. Having with some difficulty escaped, he lived 
for some time in an obscure way, till the return of the 
Duke of Albany, by whose interest he was appointed, 
in 1523, to the metropolitan see of St. Andrews. On 
the revival of the power of the Douglasses in the 
same year, he was again obliged to retire. It is said 
thnt the insurrection of the Earl of Lennox, in 1525. 
which ended in the triumph of the Douglasses and 
the death of the earl at Linlithgow Bridge, was 
stirred up by Archbishop Beaton, as a means of 
emancipating the king. After this unhappy event, 
the Douglasses persecuted him with such keenness 
that, to save his life, he assumed the literal guise 
and garb of a shepherd, and tended an actual flock 
upon Bogrian-Knowe in Fife. At length, when 
James V. asserted his independence of these powerful 
tutors, and banished them from the kingdom, Beaton 
was reinstated in all his dignities, except that of 
chancellor, which was conferred upon Gavin Dun- 
bar, the king's preceptor. lie henceforward resided 
chiefly at St. Andrews, where, in 1527, he was in- 
duced, by the persuasions of other churchmen less 
mild than himself, to consent to the prosecution and 
death of Patrick Hamilton, the proto-martyr of the 
Scottish Refonnation. He was subsequently led on 
to various severities against the reformers, but rather 
through a want of power to resist the clamours of his 
brethren, than any disposition to severity in his own 
nature. It would appear that he latterly intrusted 
much of the administration of his affairs to his less 
amiable nephew. The chief employment of his latter 
years was to found and endow the New College of St. 
Andrews, in which design, however, he was thwarted 
in a great measure by his executors, who misapplied 
the greater part of his funds. He died in 1539. 

BEATON, James, Archbishop of Glasgow, was 
the second of the seven sons of John Beaton, or Be- 
thune, of Balfour, elder brother of Cardinal Beaton. 
He received the chief part of his education at Paris, 
imder the care of his celebrated uncle, wlio was then 
residing in the French capital .as ambassador from 
James V. His first preferment in the church was to 
be chanter of the cathedral of (JIasgow, under Arch- 
bishop Dunbar. When his uncle attained to nearly 
supreme power, he was emiiloyed by him in many 
imj)ortant matters, and in 1543 succeeded him as 
Abbot of Aberbr<jthick. The death of the cardinal 
does not a])pear to have materially retarded the ad- 
vancement of his nephew; for we find that, in 1552, 
he had sufficient interest with the existing govern- 
ment to receive the second place in the .Scottish 
church, tiie archbishopric of (ilasgow, to which he 
was consecrated at Rome. He was now one of the 
most important personages in the kingdom; he en- 
joyed the confidence of the governor, the Karl of Ar- 
ran; iiisniece. Mar)' Beaton, oneof the " l'"our Maries," 
was the favourite of the young Queen Mary, now 
residing in France; and he was also esteemed very 



highly by the queen-dowager, Mary of Lorrain, who 
was now aspiring to the regency. During the sub- 
sequent sway of the queen regent, the Archbishop of 
St. Andrews enjoyed her highest confidence. It was 
to him that she handed the celebrated letter addressed 
to her by John Knox, saying, with a careless air, 
"Please you, my lord, to read a pasquil." In 1557, 
when the marriage of the youthful Mary to the Dau- 
phin of P" ranee was about to take place, James Bea- 
ton, Archbishop of St. Andrews, stood the first of the 
parliamentary commissioners appointed to be present 
at the ceremony, and to conduct the difficult business 
which was to precede it. He and his companions 
executed this duty in a most satisfactory manner. 
After his return in 1558 he acted as a privy-councUlor 
to the queen regent, till she was unable any longer to 
contend with the advancing tide of the Reformation. 
In November, 1559, his former friend, the Earl of 
Arran, who had now become a leading reformer, 
came with a powerful retinue to Glasgow, and, to use 
a delicate phrase of the time, "took order" with the 
cathedral, which he cleared of all the images, placing 
a garrison at the same time in the archbishop's palace. 
Beaton soon after recovered his house by means of 
a few French soldiers; but he speedily found that 
neither he nor his religion could maintain a permanent 
footing in the country. 

In June, 1560, the queen regent expired, almost at 
the very moment when her authority became extinct. 
Her French troops, in terms of a treaty with the re- 
formers, sailed next month for their native country; 
and in the same ships was the Archbishop of Glasgow, 
along with all the plate and records of the cathedral, 
which he said he would never return till the Catholic 
faith should again be triumphant in Scotland. Some 
of these articles were of great value. Among the 
plate, which was very extensive and rich, was a golden 
image of Christ, with silver images of his twelve 
apostles. Among the records, which were also very 
valuable, were two chartularies, one of which had been 
written in the reign of Robert HI., and was called 
The Red Book of Clasgcnu. All these objects were 
deposited by the archbishop in the Scots College at 
Paris, where the manuscripts continued to be of use 
to Scottish antiquaries up to the period of the French 
Revolution, when, it is believed, they were destroyed 
or dispersed. Beaton was received by Queen Mary 
at Paris with the distinction due to a virtuous and 
able counsellor of her late mother. On her de]3arture 
next year, to assume the reins of government in 
.Scotland, she left him in charge of her affairs in 
France. He spent the whole of the sul)sequent part 
of his life as ambassador from the .Scottish court to 
his most Christian Majesty. This duty was one of 
extreme delicacy during the brief reign of Queen 
Mary, when the relation of the two courts was of the 
most important character. Mary addressed him 
frequently in her own hand, and a letter in which she 
details to him the circumstances of her husband's 
death is a well-known historical document. 

It is not jirobable that Beaton's duty as an am- 
bassador during the minority of James VI. was any- 
thing but a titular honour; but that ])rince, on taking 
the government into his own han<ls, did n(jt hesitate, 
notwithstanding the difference of religion, to eni])loy 
a statesman who had already done faithful service to 
the two preceding generations. James also, in 1587. 
was able to restore to him both his title and estates 
as Archbishop of Glasgow — a proceeding cjuite 
anomalous, when we consider that the ])rcsl)ytcrian 
religion was now established in Scotland. The arch- 
bishop died, April 24, 1603, in the eighty-sixth year 
of his age, and a full jubilee of years from his conse- 
cration. He had been ambassador to three genera- 



ROBERT BEATSON JAMES BEATTIE. 



109 



tions of the Scottish royal family, and had seen in 
France a succession of six kings, and transacted 
public affairs under five of them. He also had 
the satisfaction of seeing his sovereign accede to the 
English throne. James learned the intelligence of 
his death while on his journey to London, and im- 
mediately appointed the historian Spottiswoode to 
he his successor in the cathedral chair of (ilasgow. 
.Vrchbishop Spottiswoode characterizes him as "a 
man honourably disposed, faithful to the queen while 
she lived, and to the king her son; a lover of his 
country, and liberal, according to his means, to all his 
countrymen." His reputation, indeed, is singularly 
pure, when it is considered with what vigour he op- 
posed the Reformation. He appears to have been 
regarded by the opposite party as a conscientious, 
however mistaken man, and to have been spared ac- 
cordingly all those calumnies and sarcasms with which 
party rage is apt to bespatter its opponents. Hav- 
ing enjoyed several livings in France, besides the less 
certain revenues of Glasgow, he died in possession 
of a fortune amounting to 80,000 livres, all of which 
he left to the Scots College, for the benefit of poor 
scholars of Scotland — a gift so munificent, that he 
was afterwards considered as the second founder of 
the institution, the first having been a Bishop of 
Moray, in the year 1325. Besides all this wealth, he 
left an immense quantity of diplomatic papers, ac- 
cumulated during the course of his legation at Paris; 
which, if they had been preserved to the present time, 
would unquestionably have thrown a strong light 
upon the events of his time. 

BEATSON, Robert, LL.D. an ingenious and 
useful author, was a native of Dysart, where he was 
bom in 1742. Being educated with a view to the 
military profession, he obtained an ensigncy in 1756 
at the commencement of the Seven Years' war. He 
served next year in the expedition to the coast of 
France, and afterwards, as lieutenant, in the attack 
on Martinique, and the taking of Guadaloupe. In 
1766 he retired on half-pay, and did not again seek 
to enter into active life till the breaking out of the 
American war. Having failed on this occasion to 
obtain an appointment suitable to his former services, 
he resolved to apply himself to another profession — 
that of literature — for which he had all along had 
considerable taste. His publications were: i. A 
Political Index to the Histories of Great Britain and 
Ireland, I vol. 8vo, 1786, of which a third edition, 
in 3 volumes, was published at a late period of his 
life. This work consists chiefly of accurate and 
most useful lists of all the ministers and other prin- 
cipal officers of the state, from the earliest time to 
the period of its publication. 2. Naval and Military 
J\femoirs 0/ Great Britain, from 1727 to the present 
time, 3 vols. 8vo, 1790; 2d edition, 6 vols. 1S04. 
3. Vu-ui of the Memorable Action of the Z^jth July, 
1778, 8vo, 1 79 1. 4. Essay on the Comparative 
Advantages of I'ertical and Horizontal WindmUls, 
8vo, 1798. 5. Chronoloi^ical Register of both Houses 
of Parliament, from 1706 to 1 807, 3 vols. 8vo, 1 807. 
Also some communications to the board of agricul- 
ture, of which he w.xs an honorary member. This 
laborious author enjoyed in his latter years the 
situation of barrack-master at Aberdeen, where, if 
we are not mist.iken, he received hisden;ree of LL.D. 
He died at Edinburgh, January 24, 181S. 

BEATTIE, Jamfs, poet and moral philosopher, 
was born on the 25th October, 1735' ^' Laurence- 
kirk, then an obscure hamlet in Kincardineshire. 
His father, James Beat tie, was a small sliop-keeper 
in the village, and at the same time rented a little 



farm in the neighlwurhood. His mother's name was 
Jean Watson, and they had six children, of whom 
the subject of this article was the youngest. The 
father was a man of information and of character 
superior to his condition, and the mother was also 
a person of abilities; on the early death of her hus- 
band, she carried on the business of his shop and 
farm, with the assistance of her eldest son, and 
thus was able to rear her family in a comfortable 
manner. 

Young Beattie, who, from his earliest years, was 
considered a child of promise, received the rudiments 
of a classical education at the parish school, which 
had been taught forty years before by Ru(ldiman, 
and was at this time a .seminary of considerable re- 
putation. His avidity for books, which, in such a 
scene might have otherwise remained unsatisfied, 
was observed by the minister, who kindly admitted 
him to the use of his library. From a copy of Ogil vy's 
Virgil, obtained in this way, he derived his first 
notions of English versification. Even at this early 
period, his turn for poetry began to manifest itself, 
and among his school-fellows he went by the name 
of the Poet. In 1749, being fourteen years of age, 
he commenced an academical course at Marischal 
College, Aberdeen, and was distinguished by Pro- 
fessor Blackwell as the best scholar in the Greek 
class. Having entitled himself by this superiority to 
a bursary, he continued at the college for three years 
more, studying philosophy under the distinguished 
Gerard, and divinity under Dr. Pollock. His origi- 
nal destination being for the church, he read a dis- 
course in the hall, which met with much commenda- 
tion, but was at the same time remarked to be poetry 
in prose. Before the period when he should have 
taken his trials before the presbytery, he relinquished 
all thoughts of the clerical profession, and settled as 
school-master of the parish of Fordoun, near his 
native village. 

In this humble situation, Beattie spent the years 
between 1753 and 1758. In the almost total want of 
society, he devoted himself alternately to useful study 
and to poetical recreation. It was at this period of 
life his supreme delight to saunter in the fields the 
livelong night, contemplating the sky, and marking 
the approach of day. At a small distance from the 
place of his residence, a deep and extensive glen, 
finely clothed with wood, runs up into the mountains. 
Thither he frequently repaired; and there several of 
his earliest pieces were written. From that wild 
and romantic spot he drew, as from the life, some 
of the finest descriptions and most beautiful pictures 
of nature that occur in his poetical compositions. 
It is related that, on one occasion, having lain down 
early in the morning on the bank of his favourite 
rivulet, adjoining to his mother's house, he had fallen 
asleep; on awaking, it was not without astonishment 
that he found he had been walking in his sleep, and 
that he was then at a considerable distance (about a 
mile and a half) from the place where he had lain 
down. On his way back to that spot, he jiassed 
some labourers, and inquiring of tlicm if they had 
seen him walking along, they told him tliat they 
had, with his head hanging down, as if looking for 
something he had lost. Such an incident, though 
by no means unexamjiled, shows to what a degree 
Beattie was now the creature of impulse and inuigi- 
nation. He was, indeed, exactly the fanciful Ixing 
whom he has described in The Minstrel. Fortun- 
ately for Beattie, Mr. Garden, advocate (aftensards 
Lord Gardenstone), who at that time resided in the 
neighbourhooti, found him one day sitting in one of 
hisfavourite haunts, employed in writing with a 
pencd. On discovering that he was engaged in 



JAMES BEATTIE. 



the composition of poetr}', Mr. Garden became in- 
terested, and soon found occasion to honour the 
young bard with his friendship and patronage. 
Beattie at the same time became acquainted with 
Lord Monboddo, whose family seat was within the 
parish. 

In 1757, when a vacancy occurred in the place of 
usher to the grammar-school of Aberdeen, Beattie 
applied for it, and stood an examination, without 
success. On the place becoming again vacant next 
year, he had what he considered the good fortune to 
be elected. This step was of some importance to 
him, as it brought him into contact with a circle of 
eminent literary and professional characters, who 
then adorned the colleges of Aberdeen, and to whom 
he soon made himself favourably known. 

In 1760 one of the chairs in the Marischal College, 
became vacant by the death of Dr. Duncan, professor 
of natural philosophy. Beattie, whose ambition had 
never presumed to soar to such an object, happened 
to mention the circumstance in conversation, as one 
of the occurrences of the day, to his friend Mr. 
Arbuthnot, merchant in Aberdeen;* who surprised 
him with a proposal that he should apply for the 
vacant situation. With a reluctant permission from 
Beattie, he e.\erted his influence with the Earl of 
Errol to apply, by means of Lord Milton, to the 
Duke of Argyle, who then dispensed the crown pat- 
ronage of Scotland; and to the astonishment of the 
subject of the application, he received the appoint- 
ment. By an accommodation, however, with the 
nominee to another vacant chair, he became pro- 
fessor of moral instead of natural philosophy; an 
arrangement suitable to the genius and qualifications 
of both the persons concerned. 

By this honourable appointment, Beattie found 
himself, through an extraordinary dispensation of 
fortune, elevated in the course of two years from the 
humble and obscure situation of a country parish 
schoolmaster, to a place of very high dignity in one 
of the principal seats of learning in the country, where 
he could give full scope to his talents, and indulge, 
in the greatest extent, his favourite propensity of 
communicating knowledge. His first business was 
to prepare a course of lectures, which he began to 
deliver to his pupils during the session of 1760-1, and 
which, during subsequent years, he greatly improved. 
In the discharge of his duties he was indefatigable; 
not only delivering the usual lectures, but taking 
care, by frequent recapitulations and public examina- 
tions, to impress upon the minds of his auditors the 
great and important doctrines which he taught. 

So early as the year 1756 Dr. Beattie had occasion- 
ally sent poetical contributions to iha Scots Magazi/ie 
from his retirement at Fordoun. Some of these, 
along with others, he now arranged in a small 
volume, which was published at London, 1760, and 
dedicated to the Earl of Errol, his recent benefactor. 
His Orii^inal rocins and Translatio7u — such was the 
title of the volume — made him favourably known to 
the public as a poet, and encouraged him to further 
exertions in that branch of composition. He also 
studied verse-making as an art, and in 1762 wrote his 
Essay on Poetry, which was published in 1 776, along 
with the fiuarlo edition of his Essay on Tnitli. In 
1 763 he visited London from curiosity, and in 1 765 he 
jjubiished a poem of considerable length, but unfor- 
tunate design, under the title of The Jndi^ment of 
Paris, which threatened to be as fatal to his poetical 
career, as its subject had been to the Trojan state. 
In 1766 he published an enlarged edition of his 



' Father to Sir William Arbuthnot, I'art,, who was lorj- 
provoat of Edinburgh at tlic vi^it of Gcorjji; IV. in JS22. 



poems, containing among other compositions The 
yudgtnent of Pans; but this poem he never after- 
wards reprinted. His object was to make the 
classical fable subservient to the cause of virtue, by 
personifying wisdom, ambition, and pleasure in the 
characters of three goddesses, an idea too meta- 
physical to be generally liked, and which could scarcely 
be compensated by the graces of even Beattie's muse. 

Gray, the author of the Elegy in a Country Clnirch- 
yard, visited Scotland in the autumn of 1765, and 
lived for a short time at Cilamniis Castle with the Earl 
of Strathmore. Beattie, whose poetical genius was 
strongly akin to that of Gray, wrote to him, intreat- 
ing the honour of an interview; and this was speedily 
accomplished by an invitation for Dr. Beattie to 
Glammis Castle, where the two poets laid the founda- 
tion of a friendship that was only interrupted by the 
death of Gray in 1771. 

Some time previous to September, 1766, Beattie 
commenced a poem in the Spenserian stanza; a de- 
scription of verse to which he was much attached, 
on account of its harmony, and its admitting of so 
many fine pauses and diversified terminations. The 
subject was suggested to him by the dissertation on 
the old minstrels, which was prefixed to Dr. Percy's 
P cliques of Ancient English Poetry, then just pub- 
lished. In May, 1767, he informs his friend Black- 
lock at Edinburgh, that he wrote 150 lines of this 
poem some months before, and had not since added 
a single stanza. His hero was not then even bom, 
though in the fair way of being so; his parents being 
described and married. He proposed to continue 
the poem at his leisure, with a description of the 
character and profession of his ideal minstrel; but 
he was wofully cast down by the scantiness of the 
poetical taste of the age. 

On the 28th of June, 1767, Dr. Beattie was mar- 
ried, at Aberdeen, to Miss Mary Dun, the only 
daughter of Dr. James Dun, rector of the grammar- 
school of that city. The heart of the poet had 
previously been engaged in honourable affection to 
a Miss Mary Lindsay, whom, so late as the year 1823, 
the writer of this memoir heard recite a poem written 
by Beattie in her praise, the lines of which com- 
menced with the letters of her name in succession. 
The venerable lady was the widow of a citizen of 
Montrose, and in extreme though healthy old age. 

At this period infidelity had become fashionable 
to a great extent in Scotland, in consequence of the 
tr/a/ which attended the publication of Hume's meta- 
physical treatises. Attempts had been made Ijv 
Drs. Reid and Campbell, in res})ective publications, 
to meet the arguments of the illustrious sceptic; but 
it was justly remarked by the friends of religion, that 
the treatises of these two individuals assumed too 
much of that deferential tone towards the majesty of 
Mr. Hume's intellect and reputation, which was to 
be complained of in society at large, and no doubt 
was one of the causes why his sceptical notions had 
become so fashionable. It occurred to Dr. Beattie, 
and he was encouraged in the idea by his frientls 
Dr. Gregory, Sir William Forbes, and other zealous 
adherents of Christianity, that a work treating I lunic 
a little more roughly, and not only answering him 
with argument, but assailing him and his followers 
with ridicule, might meet the evil more extensively, 
and be more successful in bringing back the jhUjIIc 
to a due sense of religion. .Such was the origin tif 
his Essay on Tnitli, which was finished for the press 
in autumn, 1 769. 

It is curious that this essay, so powerful as a 
defence of religion, was only brought into the woild 
by means of a kind of ])ious fraud. The manuscrijH 
was conunitled to Sir VN'illiam Forbes and Mr. 



JAMES BEATTIE. 



Arbuthnot, at Edinburgh, with an injunction to dis- 
pose of it to any bookseller who would pay a price 
for it, so as to insure its having the personal interest 
of a tradesman in pushing it forward in the world. 
Unfortunately, however, the publisher to whom these 
gentlemen applied, saw so little prospect of profit in 
a work on the unfashionable side of the argument, 
that he positively refused to bring it forth unless at 
the ri^k of the author; a mode to which it was 
certain that Dr. Beattie would never agree. "Thus," 
says Sir William Forbes, "there was some danger 
of a work being lost, the publication of which, we 
flattered ourselves, would do much good in the 
world. 

"In this dilemma it occurred to me," continues 
Beattie's excellent biographer, "that we might, 
without much artifice, bring the business to an easy 
conclusion by our own interposition. We therefore 
resolved that we ourselves should be the purchasers, 
at a sum with which we knew Ur. Beattie would be 
well satisfied, as the price of the first edition. But 
it was absolutely necessary that the business should 
be glossed over as much as possible, otherwise we 
had reason to fear that he would not consent to our 
taking on us a risk which he himself had refused to 
run. 

"I therefore wrote him (nothing surely but the 
truth, although, I confess, not the whole truth), that 
tlie manuscript was sold for fifty guineas, which 
I remitted to him by a bank-bill; and I added that 
we had stipulated with the bookseller who was to 
print the book that we should be partners in the 
publication. On such trivial causes do things of 
considerable moment often depend; for had it not 
been for this interference of ours in this somewhat 
ambiguous manner, perhaps the Essay on Truth, on 
which all Dr. Beattie's future fortunes hinged, might 
never have seen the light." 

In the prosecution of his design, Dr. Beattie has 
treated his subject in the following manner: he first 
endeavours to trace the different kinds of evidence 
and reasoning up to their first principles; with a view 
to ascertain the standard of truth, and explain its 
immutability. Pie shows, in the second place, that 
his sentiments on this head, how inconsistent soever 
with the genius of scepticism, and with the principles 
and practice of sceptical writers, are yet perfectly 
consistent with the genius of true philosophy, and 
with the practice and principles of those whom all 
acknowledge to have been the most successful in the 
investigation of truth; concluding with some infer- 
ences or rules, by which the most important fallacies 
of the sceptical philosophers may be detected by 
every person of common sense, even though he 
should not possess acuteness of metaphysical know- 
ledge sufficient to qualify him for a logical confuta- 
tion of them. In the third place, he answers some 
objections, and makes some remarks, by way of 
estimate of scepticism and sceptical writers. 

The essay appeared in May, 1770, and met with 
the most splendid success. It immediately became 
a shield in the hands of the friends of religion, where- 
with to intercept and turn aside the hitherto resist- 
less shalts of the sceptics. A modern metaphysician 
may perliaps find many tlaws in the work; but, at 
the time of its ]iublicati()n, it was received as a com- 
plete and triumphant rel'utation of all that had been 
advanced on the other side. Under favour of the 
ivlat which attended the publication, religion again 
raisc'l its head, and for a time infidelity was not 
nearly so fashionable as it had been. 

.\fter getting this ariluous business off his mind, 
I'eattie returned to his I'ng Spenserian poem, and 
in 1 77 1 appeared the first part of The ^Tlu!;\■.', 



without his name. It was so highly successful that 
he was encouraged to republish this, along with 
a second part, in 1774; when his name appeared 
in the title-page. "Of all his poetical works. The 
Mtnstrd is, beyond all question, the best, whether 
we consider the plan or the execution. The language 
is extremely elegant, the versification harmonious; 
it exhibits the richest poetic imager)', with a delight- 
ful flow of the most sublime, delicate, and pathetic 
sentiment. It breathes the spirit of the purest 
virtue, the soundest philosophy, and the most ex- 
quisite taste. In a word, it is at once highly con- 
ceived and admirably finished."' Lord Lyttleton 
thus expressed his approbation of the poem — one of 
the most wannly conceived conijiliments that was 
ever perhaps paid by a poet to his fellow: "I read 
The iMtnstrel with as much rapture as jioelry, in her 
sweetest, noblest charms, ever raised in my mind. 
It seemed to me, that my once most beloved minstrel, 
Thomson, was come down from heaven, refined l>y 
the converse of purer spirits than those he lived with 
here, to let me hear him sing again the beauties of 
nature and finest feelings of virtue, not with human 
but with angelic strains!" It is to be regretted that 
Beattie never completed this poem. He originally 
designed that the hero should be employed in the 
third canto in rousing his countr}Tnen to arms for 
defence against a foreign invasion, and that, over- 
powered and banished by this host, he should go 
forth to other lands in his proper character of a 
wandering minstrel. It must always be recollected, 
in favour of this poem, that it was the first of any 
length, in pure English, which had been published 
by a Scottish writer in his own country — so late has 
been the commencement of this department of our 
literature. 

Beattie visited London a second time in 1771, 
and, as might be expected from his increased reputa- 
tion, entered more largely into literarj' society than 
on the former occasion. Among those who honoured 
him with their notice, was Dr. Johnson, who had 
been one of the warmest admirers of the Essay on 
Truth. In 1773 he paid another visit to the metro- 
polis, along with his wife, and was received into 
a still wider and more eminent circle than before. 
On this occasion the university of O.vford conferred 
upon him an honoraiy degree of Doctor of Laws. 

The chief object of this tour was to secure a pro- 
vision which his friends had led him to expect from 
the government, in consideration of his services in 
the cause of religion. Many plans were proposed 
by his friends for obtaining this object. A bishop is 
believed to have suggested to the king, that the 
author of the Essav on Truth might be introduced 
to the English church, and advanced according to 
his merits; to which the king, however, is said to 
have slily replied, that as .Scotland abounded most 
in infidels, it would be best for the general in- 
terests of religion that he should be kejH there. 
George III., who had read and admired Beattie s 
book, and whose whole mind ran in favour of virtue 
and religion, suggested himself the more direct j'lnii 
of granting him a pension of C~oo a ycp.r. \\h:cii 
was accordingly carried into effect. The km;; aI>M 
honoured Dr. Beattie with his j articular ni.tice ,it 
a /cT'.v, and further granted him the f.n-'ur of a:i 'v.\- 
terview in his private apartmciits r.t Kew 1 -r vv- 
wards of an hour. The .agreeable C'Jnvcr^.•.t; 11 an i 
unassuming maimer^ of Dr. l!c.-.;t;e a: ;'t.ar t>)i;a\c 
not only made a mo^t favi^uraMc ini; rc-.-i":! \:\-^:\ 
the king .and ([ueen — for her ni.i;c.-ty .li- > wa- ] re-_ 
sent at t!iis interview — but ui;"n evc:-y ir. ■.■:■.;! lt ..1 



JAMES BEATTIE. 



that lofty circle of society to which he was intro- 
duced. 

Even after he had been thus provided for, several 
dignified clergymen of the Church of England con- 
tinued to solicit him to take orders; and one bishop 
went so far as directly to tempt him with the offer 
of a rectorate worth ;^500 a year. He had no dis- 
inclination to the otYice of a clergyman, and he 
decidecily preferred the government and worsliip 
of the English cliurch to the Presbyterian system 
of his own country. But he could not be induced 
to take sucli a reward for his efforts in behalf of 
religion, lest his enemies might say that he had 
never contemplated any loftier principle than that 
of bettering his own circumstances. Nearly about 
the same time, he further proved the total absence 
of a mercenary tinge in his character, by refusing to 
be promoted to the chair of moral philosophy in the 
university of Edinburgh. His habits of life were 
now, indeed, so completely associated with Aber- 
deen and its society, that he seems to have con- 
templated any change, however tempting, with a 
degree of pain. 

About this time, some letters passed between him 
and Dr. Priestley, on occasion of an attack made 
by the latter on the Essay on Truth. In his corres- 
pondence with this ingenious but petulant adversary. 
Dr. Beattie shows a great deal of candour and 
dignity. He had at first intended to reply, but 
this intention he appears afterwards to have dropped: 
"Dr. Priestley," says he, "having declared that he 
will answer whatever I may publish in my own 
vindication, and being a man who loves bustle and 
book-making, he wishes above all things that I 
should give him a pretext for continuing the dispute. 
To silence him by force of argument, is, I know, 
impossible." 

In the year 17S6, Beattie took a keen interest in 
favour of a scheme then agitated, not for the first 
time, to unite the two colleges of Aberdeen. In the 
same year, he projected a new edition of Addison's 
prose works, with a biographical and critical preface 
to the extent of half a volume, in wliich he meant 
to show the peculiar merits of the style of Addison, 
as well as to point out liistorically theclianges which 
the English language has undergone from time to 
time, and the liazard to which it is exposed of being 
debased and corrupted by modern innovations. He 
was reluctantly compelled by the state of his healtli 
to retrench the better part of this scheme. The 
works of .Addison were publislied under his care, in 
1790, by Messrs. Creecli and Sibbald, booksellers, 
Edinhurgli, but he could only give Tickell's Life, 
together with some extracts from Dr. Johnson's AV- 
niarks on AdJtsons Prose, adding a few notes of liis 
own, to make up any material deficiency in Tickell's 
narrative, and illustrating Johnson's critique by a 
few occasional annotations. Though these addi- 
tions to his original stock of materials are very 
slight, th; admirer of Addison is much gratified by 
some new information which lie was ignorant of 
before, and to which Dr. Beattie has given a degree 
of authenticity, by adhering, even in this instance, 
to his general jjractice of putting his name to every- 
thing he wrote. 

In 17S7 Dr. TJeattie made apjilication to the 
Mari-.chal College, while the jiroject of the union 
was still pending, desiring that his eldest son, James 
Hay Beattie, then in his twentieth year, should Ite 
recommended to the crown as his as'-istant and suc- 
cessor in the chair of moral philosopliy. The letter 
in which this apjilication was made, sets fijrth the 
cxtraor linary qualifications of his son, with a delight- 
ful mixture of delicacy and warmth. The young 



man was an excellent Greek and Latin scholar; 
wrote and talked beautifully in the latter language, 
as well as in English; and, to use the language of 
ids father, the best of his genius lay entirely towards 
theology, classical learning, morals, poetry, and 
criticism. The college received the application with 
much respect, and, after a short delay on account 
of the business of the union, gave a cordial sanction 
to the proposal. 

Unfortunately for the peace of Dr. Beattie's latter 
years, his son, while in the possession of the highest 
intellectual qualilications, and characterized by every 
virtue that could be expected from his years, was 
destined by the inherent infirmity of his constitution 
for an early death. After his demise, which hap- 
pened on the 19th of November, 1790, when he had 
just turned two and twenty. Dr. Beattie published 
a small collection of his writings, along with an ela- 
borate preface, entering largely into the character 
and qualifications of the deceased. In this, he was 
justified by the admiration which he heard every- 
where expressed of the character and intellect of 
his son; but, as posterity appears to have reduced 
the prodigy to its proper limits, which were nothing 
wonderful, it is unnecessary to bring it further into 
notice. 

Dr. Beattie bore the loss of his son with an ap- 
pearance of fortitude and resignation. Yet, although 
his grief was not loud, it was deep. He said, in a 
subsequent letter, alluding to a monument which he 
had erected for his son, "I often dream of the grave 
that is under it : I saw, with some satisfaction, on a 
late occasion, that it is very deep, and capable of 
holding my coffin laid on that which is already in 
it;" words that speak more eloquently of the grief 
which this event had fixed in the heart of the writer, 
than a volume could have done. 

Another exemplification of the rooted sorrow 
which this event planted in the mind of Beattie, 
occurs in a letter written during a visit in England, 
in the subsequent summer. Speaking of the com- 
memoration music, which was performed in West- 
minster Abbey, "by the greatest band of musicians 
that ever were brought together in this country," he 
tells that the state of his health could not permit 
him to be present. Then recollecting his son's 
accomplishment as a player on the organ, he adds, 
"Perhaps this was no loss to me. liven the organ 
of Durham Cathedral was too much for my feelings; 
for it brought too powerfully to my remembrance 
another organ, much smaller indeed, but more inter- 
esting, which I can never hear any more." 

In 1790 Dr. ]5eattie published the first volume 
of his Elcineitts of Aloral Science, the second volume 
of which did not make its appearance till 1793. 
He had, in 1776, published a series of Essays on 
poetry and music, on laughable and ludicrous com- 
])osition, and on the utility of classical learning. In 
1 783 had appeared Dissertations, Moral and Critical; 
and in 17S6 a small tract entitled The Evidetices 
of the Christian Relii^io)i brief y and plainly stated. 
All of these minor productions originally formcil 
part of the course of jnelections which he read from 
his chair in the university; his aim in their pid)lica- 
tion being "to intu'e young minds to habits of atten- 
tive observation; to guard them against the influence 
of bad i-jrincijjles; and to set before them such views 
of nature, and such plain and practical truths, as 
might at once imjirove the heart and the understand- 
ing, and amuse and elevate the fancy." His Jile- 
ments of Moral Science was a summary of the whole 
of that course of lectures, a little enlarged in the 
iloctrinal parts, with the addition of a few illustrative 
examples. In a certain degree, this work may be 



JAMES BEATTIE. 



"3 



considered as a text-book ; it is one, however, so 
copious in its extent, so luminous in its arrangement 
and language, and so excellent in the sentiments it 
everywhere inculcates, that if the profound meta- 
physician and logician do not find in it that depth 
of science which they may expect to meet with in 
other works of greater erudition, the candid inquirer 
after truth may rest satisfied that, if he has studied 
tiiese Elements with due attention, he will have laid 
a solid foundation on which to build all the know- 
ledge of the subject necessary for the common pur- 
poses of life. Of such of the lectures as had already 
appeared in an extended shape, under the name of 
Essays, particularly those on the theory of language, 
and on memory and imagination. Dr. Beattie has 
made this abridgment as brief as was consistent with 
any degree of perspicuity; while he bestowed no less 
than seventy pages on his favourite topic, the aboli- 
tion of the slave-trade, and the subject of slavery 
connected with it. 

While delighting the world with the quick suc- 
cession and variety of his productions. Dr. Beattie 
was himself nearly all the while a prey to the severest 
private sufferings. Mrs. lieattie had unfortunately 
inherited from her mother a tendency to madness. 
Though this did not for a considerable time break 
out into open insanity, yet in a few years after their 
marriage it showetl itself in caprices and follies, 
which embittered every hour of her husband's life. 
Dr. Beattie tried for a long time to conceal her dis- 
order from the world, and if possible, as he has 
been heard to say, from himself; but at last, from 
whim, caprice, and melancholy, it broke out into 
downright frenzy, which rendered her seclusion 
from society absolutely necessary. During every 
stage of her illness, he watched and cherished her 
with the utmost tenderness and care ; using ever\- 
means at first that medicine could furnish for her 
recovery, and afterwards, when her condition was 
found to be perfectly hopeless, j)rocuring for her, in 
an asylum at Musselburgli, every accommodation 
and comfort that could tend to alleviate her suffer- 
ings. "When I reflect," says Sir William P'orbes, 
"on the many sleepless nights and anxious days 
which he experienced from Mrs. Beattie's malady, 
and think of the unwearied and unremitting attention 
he paid to her, during so great a number of years 
in that sad situation, his character is exalted in my 
mind to a degree which may be equalled, but I am 
sure never can be excelled, and makes the fame of 
the poet and the philosopher fade from my remem- 
brance." 

The pressure of this calamity — slow but certain — 
tlie death of his eldest son, and the continued decline 
of his health, made it necessary, in the session of 
I793'4» tli^t he should be assisted in the duties of 
his class. From that period till 1797, when he 
finally relinquished his professorial duties, he was 
aided by Mr. deorge Glennie, his relation and pupil. 
lie experienced an additional calamity in 1796, by 
the sudden death of his only remaining son, ^Ion- 
tague, a youth of eiglUecn, less learned than his 
brotlier, but of still more amiable manners, and 
wliom he had eloigned for the luiglish church. 
This latter event mdnnged the mind of Beattie, who, 
it may be remarked, had always lieen greatly depen- 
dent on the society, and even on the assistance, of 
his children. The care of their education, in which 
he was supposed to be only over-indulgent, had been 
his chief employment for many years. This last 
e'<'ent, by rendering him childless, dissolved nearlv 
the last remaining tie which bound him to the world, 
and left him a miserable wreck U]ion the shores of 
lile. Many days had not elapsed after the death of 

VOL. I. 



Montague Beattie, ere he began to display symptoms 
of a decayed intellect, in an almost total loss of 
memory respecting his son. He would search 
through the whole house for him, and then say to 
his niece and housekeeper, Mrs. Glennie, "You 
may think it strange, but I must ask you, if I have 
a son, and where he is." This lady would feel her- 
self under the painful necessity of bringing to his re- 
collection the death-bed sufferings of his son, which 
always restored him to reason. And he would then, 
with many tears, express his thankfulness that he 
had no child, saying, with allusion to the malady 
they might have derived from their mother, "How 
could 1 have borne to see their elegant minds 
mangled with madness?" When he looked for the 
last time on the dead body of his son, and thought 
of the separation about to take place between him- 
self and the last being that connected him with this 
sublunary scene, he said, "Now, I have done with 
the world 1" After this, he never bent his mind 
again to study, never touched the violoncello, on 
which he used to be an excellent and a fretjuent 
player, nor answered the letters of his friends, except 
perhaps a very few. 

In March, 1797, Dr. Beattie became completely 
crippled with rheumatism, and in the beginning of 
1799 he experienced a stroke of palsy, which for 
eight days so affected liis speech that he could not 
make himself understood, and even forgot several 
of the most material words of every sentence. At 
different periods after this, he had several returns 
of the same afflicting malady; the last, in October, 
1802, deprived himaltogetherof the power of motion. 
He lingered for ten months in this humiliating situa- 
tion, but was at length relieved from all his suffer- 
ings by the more kindly stroke of death, August 18, 
1S03. He expired without the least appearance of 
suffering. His remains were deposited close to those 
of his two sons in the ancient cemetery of St. Nicolas, 
and were marked soon after by a monument, for 
which Dr. James Gregory of Edinburgh supplied an 
elegant inscription. 

The eminent rank which Dr. Beattie holds as a 
Christian moral philosopher is a sufticient testimony 
of the public approbation of his larger literary efforts. 
It may, however, be safely predicted that his repu- 
tation will, after all, centre in his Minstrel, which is 
certainly his most finished work, and, everything con- 
sidered, the most pleasing specimen of his intellect. 

The mind of Beattie is so exactly identified with 
his works, and is so undisguisedly depicted in them, 
that when his works are described, so also is his 
character. His whole life was spent in one continued 
series of virtuous duties. His piety was pure and 
fer\'ent; his affection for his friends enthusiastic; his 
benevolence unwearying; and the whole course of his 
life irreproachable. The only fault which his bio- 
grapher, Sir William Forbes, could find in the whole 
composition of his character, was one of a contingent 
and temporar)' nature: he l>ecame. towards the end of 
his life, a littfe irritable by continued application^ to 
meLaphysical controversy. To a very correct and tine 
taste in'poetry he added the rare accomplislimcnt of 
an acquaintance, to a considerable extent, with l»nh 
the sister arts of painting and music: hi.-' ])rac;icc in 
drawing never went, iiuleed, beyond an occa.-ioiial 
grotescpie sketch of some friend, for the aniu>(. mi-n: 
of a soci;il hour. In music he was niuio liccply 
skilled, being not only able to take jiariin ; r.\ate 
concerts on the violoncello, but ca]>al)!eoi api^rcciat- 
ing the music of the vcrv- highe-t iiia>tcr> Iit every 
other instrument. In his jx-rson, he was o! tlie 
middle height, though not elegantly, yet not awk- 
wardly fonned, but with something of a il^uch in his 



114 



ANDREW BELL. 



gait. His eyes were black and piercing, with an 
expression of sensibility somewhat bordering on 
melancholy, except when engaged in cheerful con- 
versation and social intercourse with his friends, 
when they were exceedingly animated. Such was 
"the MiustreL" 

BELL, Andrew, D.D., author of the UfaJms 
System of Education, was born at St. Andrews, in 
1753, and educated at the university of that place. 
The circumstances of his early life, and even the date 
of his entering into holy orders, are not known; but 
it is stated that he was remarkable in youth for tlie 
exemplary manner in which he fulfilled every public 
and private duty. After having spent some time in 
America, we tind him, in 1786, officiating as one of 
the ministers of Su Mary's, at Madras, and one of 
the chaplains of Fort St. George. 

In that year the directors of the East India Com- 
pany sent out orders to Madras that a seminary 
should be established there for tlie education and 
maintenance of the orphans and distressed male 
children of the European military. The proposed 
institution was at first limited to the support of a 
hundred orphans: half the expense was defrayed by 
the Company, and half by voluntary subscriptions; 
and the Madras government appropriated Egmore 
Redoubt for the use of the establishment. The 
superintentlence of this asylum was undertaken by 
Dr. Hell, who, having no object in view but the 
gratification of his benevolence, refused the salary of 
1200 pagodas (/'4S0) which was attached to it. 
"Here," he reasoned with himself, "is a field for 
a clergyman to animate his exertion, and encourage 
his diligence. Here his success is certain, and will 
be in proportion to the al)ility he shall discover, tlie 
labour he shall bestow, and the means he shall em- 
ploy. It is by instilling principles of religion and 
morality into the minds of the young that he can 
best accomplish the ends of his ministry: it is by 
forming them to habits of diligence, industry, veracity, 
and hone.->ty, and by instructing them in useful know- 
ledge, that he can best promote their individual in- 
terest, and serve t!ie stale to wliich they belong — 
two purposes which cannot, in sound policy, or even 
in reality, exist apart. 

With these feelings, and with this sense of duty. 
Dr. Bell began his task. He had to work upon the 
mor,t unpromising materials; but the difficulties he 
had to encounter led to that improvement in educa- 
tion with which his name is connected. Failing to 
retain the services of properly qualified ushers, he 
resorted to tlie expedient of conducting his school 
througli tlie medium of the scholars themselves. It 
is in the mode of conducting a school by means of 
mutual instruction that the discovery of Dr. Bell 
con>i-,ts; and its value, as an abbreviation of the me- 
chanical part of teaching, .and where large numbers 
were to be taught economically, could not be easily 
over-estimated at the time, altliough later education- 
ali-^ts have improved upon the ])lan; and the Madras 
system is now le^s in use than formerly. The first 
new practice which Dr. IScll introduced into his 
school was that of tcacliing the letters by making the 
pupils trace tiiem in sand, as he had seen children do 
in a .Malaiiar school. The next im]novement was 
the practice of sy]hd)ic Tea<lii:i;. Tlie child, after he 
had learned to read and spell niono^vllables, was not 
allowed to pronounce two >yl!:il)le-. till he acquired 
by long practice a ])errecl jireci-ion. I'loni the com- 
mencement of his experiment lie made the scholars, 
as far as jiossible, do everything for themselves: they 
ruled their own pa])er, maile their own ]>eiis, iVc, 
with the direction only of their teaelier. The maxim 



of the school was, that no boy could do anything right 
the first time, but he must learn when he first set 
about it, by means of his teacher, so as to be able to 
do it himself ever afterwards. Every boy kept a 
register of the amount of work which he performed, 
so that his diligence at different times might be com- 
pared. There was also a black book, in which all 
offences were recorded: this was examined once 
a week; and Dr. Bell's custom, in almost every case 
of ill-behaviour, was to make the boys themselves 
judges of the offender. He never had reason, he 
says, to think their decision partial, biassed, or un- 
just, or to interfere with their award otherwise than 
to mitigate or remit the punishment, when he thought 
the formality of the trial and of the sentence was 
sufficient to produce the effect retpiired. But the 
business of the teachers was to preclude punishment 
by preventing faults; and so well was this object 
attained, that for months together it was not found 
necessary to inflict a single jninishment. 

An annual saving of not less than £c)(x) upon the 
education and support of two hundred boys ^\as pro- 
duced in the institution at INIadras by Dr. Bell's 
regidations and improvements. This, however, he 
justly regarded as an incidental advantage: his grand 
aim was to redeem the children from the stigma 
under which they laboured, and the fatal effect which 
that stigma produced, and to render them good 
subjects, good men, and good Christians. After 
superintending the school for seven years, he found 
it necessary for his health to return to Europe. 
The directors of the charity passed a resolution for 
providing him a passage in any ship which he might 
wish to sail in, declaring at the same time that, 
under "the wise and judicious regulations which he 
had established, the institution had been brought to a 
degree of perfection and promising utility far exceed- 
ing what the most sanguine hopes could have sug- 
gested at the time of its establishment; and that 
he was entitled to their fullest approbation for his 
zealous and disinterested conduct." The language 
in which Dr. Bell spoke of the institution, on leaving 
it, will not be read without emotion by those who are 
capable of appreciating what is truly excellent in 
human nature. During seven years which he had 
devoted to this office, he had "seen the vices incident 
to the former situation of these orphans gratlually 
vanishing, their morals and conduct approaching 
nearer and nearer every year to what he wished them 
to be, and the character of a race of children in 
a manner changed." "This numerous family," said 
he, "I have long regarded as my own. These 
children are, indeed, mine by a thousand ties. I have 
for them a parental affection, which has grown upon 
me every year. For them I have niatle such sacri- 
fices as parents have not always occasion to make for 
their children; and the nearer the jK-riod njiproaches 
when 1 must separate myself from them, the more 
I feel the pang I shall suffer in tearing myself from 
this charge, and the anxious thoughts I shall throw 
back u]K)n these children when 1 shall cease to be 
their protector, their guide, and their instructor." 
Eleven years after he had left India, Dr. Bell re- 
ceived a letter, signed by forty-four of these inijiils, 
exi:>ressing, in the strongest terms, their gratitude for 
the instruction and care which he had bestowed 
upon them in childhoi"!. 

(~)n his arrival in Europe, Dr. Bell pulili>lu(l, in 
1797, a ])amphlcl, entitled .-/;/ J-lxpcrimcnl i/i l-Alnca- 
f/on made at the Male Asylum of Madras : su;e:;^esliir.:; 
a System by vhich a School or Family may teae/i itself 
uuiler the Snperiutoidcncc of the Master or J\treul. 
The first ])lace in I'^ngland \\here the s_\sfeni \\ai 
adoj)ted was the charity school of .St. llodolph's, 



ANDREW BELL BEN7AMIX BELL. 



I'S 



Aldgate. Dr. Bri!2;gs, then of Kendal, the second 
who profited by Dr. Bell's discovery, introduced it 
into the Kendal schools of industry. These occur- 
rences took place in 1798. In 1801 the system was 
fully and successfully acted upon in the schools of the 
society for hettering the condition of the poor. 

In 1803 Mr. Josei)h Lancaster first appeared before 
the public. He published a pamphlet with the fol- 
hjwing title •.—Improvetneiits in Education, as it rcsptxts 
the IiidtislrioHs Classes of the Community; containini; 
a sfurrt Account 0/ its Present State, Hints toauards its 
Improi'cment, and a Detail of some Practical Experi- 
ments conducive to that end. "The institution," he 
says, "which a benevolent Providence has been 
pleased to make me tlie happy instrument of bringing 
into usefulness, was begun in the year 1798. The 
intention was to afford the children of mechanics, 
iVc, instniction in reading, writing, and arithmetic, 
at about half the usual price." Tlie peculiarity of his 
plan seems to have consisted chiefly in introducing 
])rizes and badges of merit, together with a mode of 
teaching spelling, which was said to economize time 
and trouble: he also called in the assistance of boys, 
as monitors. In his pamphlet of 1803 he freely 
accords to Bell the priority of the mutual system, 
acknowledging also that the jjublished account of it 
had furnished him with several useful hints. Even- 
tually, Mr. Lancaster put forward a claim, obviously 
unfounded, to be considered the sole inventor of the 
system. One of his advertisements in the newspapers 
was thus introduced: — "Joseph Lancaster, of the 
Free School, Borough Road, London, havinginvented, 
under the blessing of divine Providence, a new and 
mechanical system of education for the use of schools, 
feels anxious to disseminate the knowledge of its 
advantages through the United Kingdom. By this 
system, parado.xical as it may appear, above looo 
children may be taught and governed by one master 
only." And on another occasion he writes: — "I stand 
forward before the public, at the bar of mankind, to 
the present, and for the future ages, avowing myself 
the inventor of the British or Royal Lancasterian 
.System." — (Morning J'ost, 4th .September.) Again: 
"I submit the plan, original as it is, to the country. 
The same cannot be found in any other work unless 
copied or pirated." — (Preface to edition of iSoS. ) 

But however unfounded Lancaster's claim to origin- 
ality may be, tliere can be no doubt that, through his 
exertions chiet]y, the system was extensively reduced 
to practice in England. Belonging to the sect of 
(Quakers — a body whose exertions in the cause of 
]ihilanthropy are universally known — he did not 
ai)ply to them in vain for pecuniary support and per- 
sonal exertion. Lancasterian schools were rapidly 
est.ablished in all parts of the kingdom. 

Dr. Bell lived long enough to witness the intro- 
duction of his system into 12,973 national schools, 
educating 900,000 of the children of his linglish 
countrymen, and to know that it was employed ex- 
ton-ively in almost every other civilized countiy. 
lie ac'iuiro 1 in later life the ilignity of a prebendar\- 
of \Vc-tinin>ter, and was master of Sherborn liospitaf, 
Durham. He was also a member of the Asiatic 
Society, .and of the Royal Society of Edinburgh. 
He emiiloyed hini.--elf during his latter years in writ- 
ing S'jvcral works on e<iucatinn, among which the 
mo>t valu.ilile were, />;<• /•.'/<;;/.••;/ A- o/' fintion, 7>ir 
English S.-/':,\h'. and a Fr::/ MtiiiKa! of Mutual Iii- 
strucl:o)! and />:s-;p.'.n.: The evening of his jiious 
and useful life \\a> snent at t'heUenham, in the jn'ac- 
tice of every soci.il ami di>nie-.!ic virtue. Previouslv 
to his death, lie bestowed /.'i20,ooo, throe percent'. 
St >ek, fnf tlie piirpi )~-_' oi" t'.;ii<iii\4 r.ii a'.-,iile;ny on nn 
extensive and libenil ;,cale in lu^ native c.lv. He 



also l)equeathed a considerable sum for purposes 
of education in Edinburgh; which, however, to the 
everlasting disgrace of the individuals intrusted with 
the public affairs of that city at the time, was com- 
promised among the general funds of that corpora- 
tion a few months before its bankruptcy. 

Dr. l{ell died on the 27th of January, 1 832, in the 
eightieth year of his age, and was buried in West- 
minster Abbey, the .'\rclibishop of Canterbury and 
the Bishop of London acting as chief mourners. 

BELL, Bknjamin, a <listinguishcd surgical author, 
was born in Dumfries in 1749. He received an ex- 
cellent classical education at the grammar-school of 
that town, under Dr. Chajiman, the rector. The 
property of Blackett House, in Dumfriesshire, hav- 
ing devolved to him on the death of his grandfather, 
he gave a remarkable instance of generosity bv dis- 
posing of it, and applying the proceeds in educating 
himself and the younger branches of the family — four- 
teen in number. 

Mr. Bell had early made choice of medicine as 
a profession, and accordingly he was bound a]ipren- 
tice to Mr. Hill, surgeon in Dumfries, whose practice 
was in that quarter very extensive. It was a dis- 
tinguishing feature in Mr. Bell's character, that what- 
ever he had once engaged in was prosecuted with 
extreme ardour and assiduity. He therefore went 
through the dnidgery and fatigue necessarily con- 
nected with the detail of a surgeon-apothecar)'s shop 
with the greatest spirit. He, by degrees, materially 
assisted his master by attending his patients — tu 
whom his correct behaviour, unfailing good humour, 
and agreeable manners recommended him in the 
most powerful manner. He repaired to Edinburgii 
in 1766, entered himself as a member of the univer- 
sity, and set himself, with the most serious applica- 
tion, to the prosecution of his medical studies. The 
Edinburgh medical school had just sprung into notice, 
and was beginning to make very rapid strides to its 
present eminence. The first and second Monro had 
already given evident tokens of the most distinguished 
genius. The first had now relinquished, in favour 
of his equally skilful son, the business of the ana- 
tomical theatre, and only occasionally delivered 
clinical lectures in the infirmary. Mr. Bells ardour 
in the study of anatomy, in all its branches, was 
tmabated. As he jirojiosed to practise surgen.', he 
was well aware that eminence in that department of 
the profession could only be arrived at by persever- 
ing industry. He was appointed house-surgeon to 
the Royal Infirmaiy, which atYorded him every ojijior- 
tunily of improvement. It wa> here that he laid tlie 
foundation of that superior adroitness and dexterity 
which so peculiarly characterized him in the many 
hazardous but successful operations which he was 
called to perform. 

Though Mr. Bell was more ]\articularly designed 
for the profession of a surgeon, he neglected no de- 
]iartment of medicine. Dr. black, who<e discnerns 
formed a new era in tlie science of chomi-lry. luid 
been removed from Clia<go\v to Ivlinbur^li il;:ri;:g 
the year in which Mr. I'jell entered the i:i;:vLr-:;} . 
His lectures and ex]")erin''.ent> prnwii geixr.".::;. .'1- 
tractive. and ]iowerruilv intere>teii tile ir.in i ot I'--.:. 
Dr. C'ullen was ]inife->or of tiie ii.-tituie^ ■ : n.i. .i- 
cinc, and hi^ ori:_;iiial genius excited ll;e gri. r.".'- -'. ."r- 
douranmng-t tile .-I'l'.'ien!--. Tlie ]'iM^;-i_e "l i.:r ■.. .::c 
wa- taii;_:lil liy I >i-. J.'li!i (iivg' ry. :^r: i !■■:.■.:;. i ;. I 'r. 
jnhn Hope. ' d'lie-"e were t!!e j.r :'..-- ; - v i. ::: Mr. 
bell attended, .nn.l it riit-t i'e e-: ;"---: \ ti . t l::ey 
^vere men nt i!i~t;!iL;'^-i'''d t '!■■■:'■-. :'■ •.\ '' - ■■ ti;!''^ 
no dili^/cnt sti; !ent eu;:id l.-ti.n ^. .1:. - t;t ,L.:\.;.j, \^r\ 



ii6 



SIR CHARLES BELL. 



Mr. Bell had resolved, in 1770, to visit Paris and 
London — the two great schools for surgical practice. 
Before doing so, however, he passed the examinations 
at Surgeons' Hall, and was admitted a member of the 
Royal College of Surgeons, Edinburgh. In those 
great cities he remained nearly two years, assiduously 
improving himself in surgery. Returning to his native 
country in 1772, he commenced business in Edin- 
burgh. Eew came better prepared than he did for 
the practice of surgery. His education was liberal 
and extensive. His appearance was much in his 
favour. His address was good, his manner com- 
posed and sedate. Mr. Bell had early formed the 
])lan of composing a system of surgery — and this he 
at last accomplished. He did not jiublish the whole 
work at once; but in the year 1778, about six years 
after he had finally settled in Edinl)urgh, and become 
established in practice, the first volume was given to 
the world. The remaining volumes appeared from 
time to time until the work was completed in six 
volumes, 8vo, in 17S8. In 1793 aj^pcared his Treatise 
on Gonorrluea, and in 1794 another Treatise on 
Hydrocele, which is understood to be the least popular 
of his works. 

Mr. Bell married, in 1776, Miss Hamilton, daughter 
of Dr. Robert Hamilton, professor of divinity in the 
university of Edinburgh, by whom he had a numerous 
family. He died, April 4, 1 806. 

BELL, Sir Charles, was bom at Edinburgh in 
1774. His father was a minister of the Scottish 
Episcopal Church, and held a small living at Doune, 
in the county of Perth. As the minister died while 
still young, his family, consisting'of four sons, were 
thrown upon the maternal care; but this, instead of 
being a disadvantage, seems to have produced a 
contrary effect, by the early development of their 
talents, so that they ail attained distinguished 
positions in society, the first as a writer to the signet, 
the second as an eminent surgeon, and the third as 
professor of Scots law in the university of Edinburgh. 
Charles, the youngest, was less favourably situated 
tlian his brothers for a complete education, but his 
own obsei-vation and natural aptitude supplied the 
deficiency. "My education," he tells us, " was the 
example of my brothers." The care of his mother 
did the rest, so that her youngest and best-beloved 
child at last outstripped his more favoured seniors, 
and his grateful remembrance of her lessons and 
training continued to the end of his life. The 
history of such a family justifies the saying which 
the writer of this notice has often heard repeated by 
a learned professor of the university of Glasgow: 
"When I see," he said, "a very talented youth who 
makes his way in the world, I do not ask. Who was 
his father? but. Who was his mother?" On l)eing 
removed to the high-school of Edinburgh — where, 
by the way, he made no distinguished figure — 
Charles was chiefly under the charge of his brother 
John, sulj-equently t!ie eminent surgeon, and it was 
from him he derived tliat impulse which determined 
his future career. He studied anatomy, and with 
such proficiency that, even before he had reached 
the age of manhood, he was al)le to deliver lectures 
on that science, as a-;s;stant of his l)rother John, to 
a class of more than a liundred pu]^ils. In 1799, 
even before he was athnittcd a fellow of the Royal 
College of Surgeons of lidinburgh, he published the 
first part of his System of Dissections. Longing, 
however, for a wider field of action, and disgusted 
with the medical controversies in I^dinbiirgh, he 
removed to London in 1 804. It was a bold step; 
for at this time, owing to jjolitical causes, a Scots- 
man of education was regarded with suspicion and 



dislike in this favourite field of Scottish adventure, 
and Charles Bell was looked upon as an interloper 
come to supplant the true children of the English 
soil. But he bravely held onward in his course, and 
won for himself the esteem of influential friends, the 
chief of whom were .Sir Astley Cooper and Dr. 
Abernethy, and he soon extended the circle by his 
treatise on the Anatomy of Expression, which was 
published in London in 1806. It was a work so 
admirably suited for painters, in their delineations 
of human feeling and passion, that the most dis- 
tinguished artists of the day adopted it for their 
text-book, and were loud in their encomiums of its 
merits. .Still, however, this was but the foundation- 
stone of his future distinction. Bell had determined 
to be "chief of his profession in character," and to 
attain this daring height much had to be surmounted. 
He commenced as a public lecturer, but upon a 
humble and disadvantageous scale, as he was slill an 
alien in London; and his early discoveries upon the 
nervous system, which he was patiently maturing, as 
his future highest claims to distinction, were as yet 
but little esteemed by the public, and would be 
compelled to force their way slowly into notice, if 
they should ever chance to be noticed. In 1807, the 
same year in which he commenced his course of 
lectures, he published his System of Operative Surgery., 
a work where all the operations described in it were 
the result not of mere theory or reading, but of 
personal experience. 

It was amidst this disheartening amount of un- 
thanked, unappreciated toil and disappointment that 
Charles Bell sought a comforter of his cares; and in 
181 1 he married Miss Shaw, who not only justified 
his choice, but made him brother-in-law to two men 
whose pursuits were congenial to his own. These 
were John and Alexander Shaw, whom his lessons 
and example raised into distinguished anatomists and 
physiologists, wliile the latter ultimately became the 
most effective chamj^ion of his preceptor's claims to 
originality in his physiological and anatomical dis- 
coveries. Bell's darkened horizon now began to 
clear, and his worth to be properly estimated. In 
181 1, the happy year of his marriage, after he had 
long remained unconnected with any medical school 
or association, he was allied to the Hunterian 
School in Windmill Street, as joint-lecturer with 
Mr. Wilson. The extent of his knowledge and 
power of illustrating it, exhibited in his ]irelcctions, 
and the happy facility of demoiistration and language, 
which he had always at command, soon made his 
lectures popular, so that in 1814 he was a]i|)ointcd 
surgeon to the Middlesex Hospital; and here his 
remarkable skill as an operator, combined with his 
style of lecturing, which although not eloquent, was 
full of thought very strikingly expressed, made him 
a favourite both with patients and pupils. The 
result of his labours there, whicli continued till 1836, 
enabled him to make the honest boast at his 
departure, that he had left the institution, which at 
his entrance was Init of small account, "\\ith full 
wards, and ^120,000 in the funds." 

.\s the wliole of the ]:ireceding ]icrio<1, uji to the 
date of Napoleon's banishment to .St. Helena, hatl 
l>een a season of war, the professional talents of Bell 
had been in reriuest in our military hospitals, and 
upon the Continent, as well as in London, so that 
in 1809, immediately after the battle of Corunna, Ik; 
quitted the metropolis, to attend upon tlie wnunded 
of the British army. Here his opjiortuiiities of 
acquiring fresh knowledge were eagerly enil)raced, 
and the result of his experience was an c^say on 
gun-shot wounds, which apjieared as an aj)pendix 
to his System of Operative Surgery, published in 1807. 



SIR CHARLES BELL 



HENRY BELL. 



117 



After the battle of Waterloo, he also repaired to 
Brussels, and took the charge of an hospital; and 
here he was engaged for three successive days and 
nights in operating upon and dressing the wounds of 
three hundred soldiers. Of these cases he made 
various drawings in water-colouring, which are 
reckoned among the best specimens of such pro- 
ductions in our anatomical school. 

The time at length arrived when Bell was to ac- 
quire that full amount of reputation for wliich he 
ha<i toiled so long and laboriously, and amidst such 
unmerited neglect. P'rom an early period his 
favourite subject of investigation was the nervous 
system, upon which the most erroneous opinions had 
hitherto prevailed. Even professional men of high 
medical and anatomical knowdedge rested satisfied in 
the belief that all the nerves were alike, and that the 
superior amount of susceptibility in any organ merely 
depended upon the greater number of nerves allotted 
to it. But even before he left Edinburgh, a suspicion 
had grown upon the mind of Bell, that this prevalent 
opinion was erroneous, and further inquiry satisfied 
him that his suspicion was right. He found that 
the nerves were distributed into different classes, to 
each of which belonged its proper function; and that 
the same puncture which, applied to any other of 
these coniluctors to the senses, would produce a sen- 
sation of pain, when applied to the eye would give 
only the impression of a Hash of light. He saw, 
also, that the two roots by whicli the spinal nerves 
are connected with the vertebral medulla, impart two 
different powers, the one of motion, the other of 
sensation. In this way he accounted for those cases 
in whicti the motive or sensitive powers are singly or 
severally lost. This discovery, which was as wonder- 
ful as tliat of the circulation of the blood, astonished 
the whole medical world: it was a revelation that 
had remained imknown till now, and when an- 
nounced coulil not be controverted; and under this 
new guidance, practical anatomists were directed to 
the proper seat of the ailments that came under their 
notice, as well as taught the right mode of cure. 
His theory, which was published in 1S21 in the 
Philosopliical Transactions, in the form of an essay 
on the "Nervous System," produced immediate at- 
tention, and when its value was apjireciated, attempts 
were ma<le to deny him the merit of the discover)'. 
Eortunateiy, however, for his claims, he had printed 
a pamplilet for distribution among his friends as 
early as 1811, in which the principal points of his 
theory were already announced; while his letters, 
written to his brother upon the subject, were suffi- 
cient to put to flight the numerous pretenders who 
claimed the discovery as their own. His subsequent 
pul)Iications on tlie Xcr-jous Circle, and On the Eye, 
completely estal)Iished the existence of a sixth sense, 
hw which we are enat)led to ascertain anti estimate 
the qualities of size, weight, form, distance, texture, 
and resistance. 

Bell had now reached the summit of his ambition, 
and established for himself a European reputation. 
His improvements were adopted in every country 
wliere the healing art was studied as a science, while 
the leading men of i!ie Continent united in testifying 
to the value of his labours. In 1S24 '^e was appointed 
to the senior chair of anatomy and surgery in the 
London College of Surgeims, while his treatises on 
Animal Mechanics, and 0>i the /land, and his Illus- 
trations of Palcys Xatural Theoa\'v, secured that 
jirofessiolial di>tinction which seemed cajiahle of no 
further extension. On the accessjun of \Villiam IV. 
to the throne, it was resolved to conimemorate this 
event by conferrini,' the honour of kni.;hthood upon 
a lew of the nKi>t eniineut scientific men of the 



period, and in this chosen number Bell was included, 
with his countrymen Brewster, Leslie, and Ivory. 
An opportunity now occurred for Sir Charles Bell 
to return to Scotland, after an absence of thirty-two 
years, by an offer in 1836 of the professorship of 
surgery in the university of Edinburgh, which he 
accepted. It was his [jrevailing desire, notwith- 
standing his wide and lucrative practice in London, 
to have leisure for prosecuting his .scientific re- 
searches, and to prosecute them among the friends 
of his youth, and in the place where they had com- 
menced. P)Ut unfortunately he found Edinburgh too 
limited a field for his purposes, and especially for 
a new and great work u])on the A'iT707/s System, 
which he wished to publish, with numerous splendid 
illustrations. Instead of this he was obliged to con- 
tent himself with a new edition of the Anatomy 0/ 
Expression, which he greatly extended and improved, 
in the course of a tour through Italy, during the in- 
terval of a college session. He also jniijlished his 
Institutes of Sur;^ery, containing the substance of his 
lectures delivered in the university. In 1S42 during 
the vacation of summer. Sir Charles left Edinburgli 
on a journey to London; but, on reaching Hallow 
Park on the 27th of May, he died suddenly the same 
night. The cause of his death was an:;ina pectoris, 
brought on, as was supposed by his friends, from 
disappointment, chiefly arising from the new medical 
reform bill, which he believed was hostile to the 
best interests of the profession. His intellectual 
originality, acuteness of perception, and steady per- 
severance, by which he attained such distinguished le- 
])utation and success, were connected with an amenity 
and gentleness of disposition, that endeared him to 
the circle of his friends and the society in which 
he moved. An excellent portrait and striking like- 
ness of -Sir Charles Bell was painted by B. Mantyne, 
of which an engraving by Thomson will be found in 
the third volume of Pettigrew's Medical JWtrait 
Gallery. 

BELL, Henry, the first successful applier of steam 
to the purposes of navigation in Europe, was born at 
Torphichen in Linlithgowshire, April 7, 1767. He 
was sprung from a race of mechanics, being the fifth 
son of Patrick Bell and Margaret Easton, whose 
ancestors, through several descents, were alike well 
known in the neighbourhood as ingenious mill- 
wrights and builders; some of them having also dis- 
tinguished themselves in the erection of public works, 
such as harbours, bridges, &c., not only in Scotland, 
but also in the other divisions of the United Kingdom. 
Henry Bell, after receiving a plain education at the 
parish school, began in 1780 to learn the handicraft 
(jf a stone-mason. Three years after he changed his 
views in favour of the other craft of the family, and 
was ajijirenticed to his uncle, who practised the art 
of a mill-wright. At the termination of his engage- 
ment he went to Borrowstounness for the purpo>e of 
being instructed in ship-motlelling; and in 17S7 he 
engaged with Mr. James Inglis, engineer at Bells- 
hill, with the view of comjdeting his kii'jwledge of 
mechanics. He afterwards went to London, w Ikto 
hewas em]:)loyed liy the celebrated Mr. Keniiie; >■ ■ tl.at 
his opportunities of acquiring a iir.-.cticai acquair.tance 
with the higher branches of his art were aIlogL;i;Lr 
very considerable. 

About the year 1790 Bell returned to Scotland, 
and it is said that he fuaetised for sever.1l ye.^.r- r.t 
Clasgow the iinanibitioiis cralt of a hou>e-ca: {enter. 
He was entered. (Jctoher 20. 1707, a- a member -f 
tlie corjioration of wrights in that city. It wa- Irs 
wi^li to become an undertaker of pr.l'lic work- in 
(Jla--'ow; ku eitiicr Uuni a delic;e:.ey cl ca; iial. or 



ii8 



HENRY BELL. 



from want of steady application, he never succeeded 
to any extent in that walk. "The truth is," as we 
have been informed, "Bell had many of the features 
of the enthusiastic projector — never calculated means 
to ends, or looked much farther than the first stages 
or movements of any scheme. His mind was a chaos 
of extraordinary projects, the most of which, from his 
want of accurate scientific calculation, he never could 
carry into practice. Owing to an imperfection in 
even his mechanical skill, he scarcely ever made one 
part of a model suit the rest, so that many designs, 
after a great deal of pains and expense, were succes- 
sively abandoned. He was, in short, the hero of 
a thousand blunders and one success." It may 
easily be conceived that a mechanician open to this 
description could not succeed, to any great extent, as 
either a designer or executor of what are called public 
works. The idea of propelling vessels by means of 
steam early took possession of his mind. "In 1800 (he 
writes) I applied to Lord Melville, on purpose to show 
his lordship and the other members of the admiralty 
the practicability and great utility of applying steam 
to the propelling of vessels against winds and tides, 
and every obstruction on rivers and seas where there 
was depth of water. After duly thinking over the 
plan, the lords of that great establishment were of 
opinion that tlie plan proposed would be of no value 
in promoting transmarine navigation." He repeated 
the attempt in 1S03, with the same result, notwith- 
standing the emphatic declaration of the celebrated 
Lord Nelson, who, addressing their lordships on the 
occasion, said, "My lords, if you do not adopt Mr. 
Bell's sclieme, other nations will, and in the end vex 
every vein of this empire. It will succeed (he 
added), and you should encourage Mr. Bell." Hav- 
ing ol)tained no support in this country. Bell for- 
warded copies of the prospectus of his scheme to the 
different nations of Europe, and to the United States 
of America. "The Americans," he writes, "were 
the first who put my plan into practice, and were 
quickly followed by other nations." Mr. Watt him- 
self had no faith in the practicability of applying his 
own great discovery to the purpose of navigation. 
In a letter addressed to Mr. Bell he said, "How 
many noblemen, gentlemen, and engineers have 
puzzled their brains, and spent their thousands of 
pounds, and none of all these, nor yourself, have been 
able to bring the power of steam in navigation to 
a successful issue." The various attempts which pre- 
ceded that of Bell are briefly noticed in the follow- 
ing extract from the Fifth Report of the Select Commit- 
tee of the House of Commons on Steamboats, fune, 1822: 
.S"/> Henry Parnell, Chairman. Mentioning the 
following as experimenters, namely, Mr. Jonathan 
Hulls, in 1736; the iJuke of Bridgewater, on the 
Manchester and Runcorn canal; Mr. Miller of Dals- 
winton; the Marquisde Jouffroy (a French nobleman), 
in 1781; Lord Stanhope, in 1795; and Mr. Syming- 
ton and .Mr. Taylor, on the Forth and Clyde Canal, 
in 1801-2; the A'i'/'yr/ proceeds: — "These ingenious 
men made valuable experiments, and tested well the 
mighty power of steam. Still no practical uses re- 
sulted from any of these attempts. It was not till 
the year 1807, when the Americans began to use 
steamboats on their rivers, that their safety and 
utility was first proved. P.ut the merit of constructing 
these boats is due to natives of (Jrcat Jh'itain. Mr. 
Henry Bell of (llasgovv gave the first model of them 
to the late .Mr. Fulton of America, and corresponded 
regularly with Fulton on the suljject. Mr. Bell con- 
tinued to turn his talents to the imjiroving of steam 
apparatus, and its application to various manufactures 
about (ilasgow; and in 1811 constructed the Comet 
Steamboat, the first of the kind in Europe, to navigate 



the Clyde, from Glasgow to Port-Glasgow, Greenock, 
Helensburgh, and Inverness." An interesting recol- 
lection of Mr. Miller's experiments on Dalswinton 
Lake has been preserved by Mr. James Nasmyth, the 
eminent engineer, on the authority of his father, who 
was present on the occasion. "The parties in the 
boat on that memorable occasion," writes Mr. Na- 
smyth to Mr. D. O. Hill, the landscape painter, who 
has introduced the lake into his picture of the valley 
of the Nith, "were Miller (of Dalswinton), Taylor 
(the engineer), Robert Burns (the poet), Henry 
Brougham (the future lord-chancellor), and Alexander 
Nasmyth (the father of landscape painting in Scot- 
land) — a fit and worthy crew to celebrate so great an 
event. Many a time (adds the writer) I have heard 
my father describe the delight which this first and 
successful essay at steam-navigation yielded the party 
in question. I only wish Burns had immortalized it 
in rhyme, for indeed it was a subject worthy of his 
muse." 

In 1808 Bell removed to the modem village of 
Helensburgh, on the Firth of Clyde, where his wife 
undertook the superintendence of the public baths, 
and at the same time kept the principal inn, whilst 
he continued to prosecute his favourite scheme, with- 
out much regard to the ordinary affairs of the world. 
In 1812 he produced his steamboat, the Comet, of 
30 tons burden, with an engine of three horse-power. 
The Comet, so called from the celebrated comet which 
appeared at that time, was built by Messrs. John 
Wood and Co., at Port-Glasgow, and made her trial 
trip on the i8th of January, when she sailed from 
Glasgow to Greenock, making five miles an hour 
against a head-wind. In August of the same year 
we find Bell advertising the Comet to ply upon the 
Clyde three times a week from (Glasgow, "to sail by 
the power of air, wind, and steam." In September 
the voyage was extended to Oban and Fort-William, 
and was to be accomplished to and from the latter 
place in four days. Mr. Bell lived to see his in- 
vention universally adopted. The Clyde, which 
first enjoyed the advantages of steam-navigation, 
became the principal seat of this description of ship- 
building; and, at the present time, Clyde-built 
steamers maintain their superiority in every port in 
the world. Steamships are now launched from the 
building-yards of Glasgow and (jreenock of 2000 
tonnage, and 800 horse-power; and Clyde-built ships, 
with Glasgow engines, make the voyage betwixt 
Liverpool and New-York in ten days. Steamboat 
building and marine-engine making received their 
first powerful impulse from the solution of the pro- 
blem of ocean steam-navigation. From tables, con- 
structed by Dr. Strang from returns furnished to him 
by the various ship-builders and engineers in Glasgow, 
Dumbarton, Greenock, and Port-Glasgow, it a]ipears 
that, during the seven years from 1846 to 1852, there 
were constructed at Glasgow and in its neighbour- 
hood 123 vessels, of which I was of wood, 122 of 
iron, 80 paddle, and 43 screw; consisting of 200 
wooden tonnage; 70,441 iron tonnage; 6610 horse- 
power engines for wooden hulls, 22,539 horse-power 
engines for iron hulls, and 4720 horsc-jiower engines 
for vessels not built on the Clyde. During the same 
period there were constructed in Dumbarton, 58 
vessels, all of iron, 20 being for ]iaddles and 38 for 
screws, and having a tonnage of 29, 761 ; and during 
the last three years of the same period, 3615 horse- 
power engines were made there for iron hulls, aiul 
200 horse-power engines for vessels not built on the 
Cly<le. During the same period, from 184610 1852, 
there were constnicted at (Jreenock and Port- 
Glasgow, 66 steam-vessels, of which 13 were of wood 
and 53 of iron, 41 paddle and 25 screw; consisting 



HENRY BELL JAMES BELL. 



I!9 



of 18,131 wood tonnage and 29,071 iron tonnage, 
129 horse- power engines for wooden hulls, 5439 
horse-power engines for iron hulls, and 4514 horse- 
power engines for vessels not built on the Clyde. 
For the whole ports in the Clyde, the steam-vessels 
built and the marine engines made, from 1846 to 
1852, were as follows: — Number of steam-vessels 
built— wood hulls, 14; iron hulls, 233; in all, 247; 
of these 141 were paddles, and 106 screws. The 
tonnage of the wootien steamers amounts to 18,331, 
of the iron to 129,273. The engines' horse-power 
in wood hulls was 6739, the engines' horse-power in 
iron hulls was 31,593; while there was of engines' 
horse-])ower for vessels not constructetl on the Clyde, 
9434, making a grand total of 247 steamers, amount- 
ing to 147,604 tons, and of engines 47,766 horse- 
power. Coming nearer to the present day, we may 
state that the ship-building yards on the Clyde alone 
turned out, in 1863, 170 vessels of 124, cxx) tonnage; in 
1864, 242 vessels of 178,505 tonnage; and in 1865, 257 
vessels of every size an<l character, with 151,297 of 
tonnage and 23,857 of horse-{x>wer. On the 1st of 
January, 1866, there were in the hands of the ship- 
builders orders for 178 vessels, with a tonnage of 
29l,27otons, and a horse-power of 42,607. Such was 
the rapid progress in a few years of steam-ship building 
on the river where Henry Bell first tried his great ex- 
periment. The steam communication which has, for 
several years, existetl betwixt our West Indian and 
North American colonies and the mother country, 
has recently iK'cn extended to Australia and the Cape 
of Ciood Hope, thus uniting (ireat Britain to her 
most distant dependencies by new and powerful tics, 
and literally realizing the vivid description of George 
Canning, who, dilating on the lx;nefits of steam- 
navigation, several years before the death of Bell, 
described it as "that new and mighty power, new at 
least in the application of its might, which walks 
tlie water like a giant, rejoicing in its course, stem- 
ming alike the tempest and the tide — accelerating 
intercourse — shortening distances — creating, as it 
were, unexpected neighbourhoods, and new com- 
binations of social and commercial relations, and 
giving to the fickleness of winds, and the faithless- 
ness of waves, the certainty and steadiness of a high- 
way upon the land." Whilst commerce and civiliza- 
tion were tlius making rapid progress by means of 
his invention, Henry Bell reap)ed no personal advan- 
tage from it. He even approached the confines of 
old age in very straitened circumstances. Touched 
by his condition, the late Dr. Cleland, and a number 
of other benevolent individuals, commenced a sub- 
scription on his liehalf, by which a consideraVjle sum 
was raised. The trustees on the river Clyde granted 
him an annuity of jCioo, which was continijed 
to his widow. This was but a liecoming acknow- 
ledgment of the value of his great invention on the 
jiart of the trustees of a river whose annual revenue 
was increased, mainly by the impulse given to its 
trade by steam-navigation, from ^6676 in iSio, the 
year befure I'>cll commenced the constraction of the 
Ci'Wt-/, to £20,2()G in 1S30, the year in which he 
died; and which has been more than tripled during 
the suhseipicnt twenty-two years, being in 1S52 
;^76.030. Within the same space of time, the 
channel of the river has undergone a corresponding 
improvement, being rcndercfl navigable by shi]is of 
700 and Soo tons burden; whereas, little more than 
half a ce;Uury ago it w.is navigable only bv coal 
gahhards and vessels <5f 30 to 45 tuns. The average 
available depth of the Clyde at high water of neap 
tides is 16 feet, with an additional depth of two 
or three leet at spring-tides. ,\t the Broomielaw, 
the harbour of Gla^guw, there are now 10,000 lineal 



feet of quayage, giving accommodation to hundreds 
of the largest siiips belonging to the mercantile 
marine of this and foreign countries. Mr. Bell died 
at Helensburgh, March 14, 1830, aged sixty-three, 
and lies buried in the Row churchyard. An obelisk 
to his memory w.is erected on the'rock of Dunglass, 
a promontory on the Clyde, about 2}.^ miles above 
Dunbarton. 

BELL, Ja.mi'.s. This indefatigable geographer 
was bom in 1769, in Jedburgh. His father, the 
Rev. Thomas Bell, minister of a Relief congregation 
in that town, and afterwards of Dovehill Cha])el in 
Glasgow, was a man of great worth and considerable 
learning, and the author of a Treatise on the Co7.e- 
nants, and several other pieces of a theological kind. 
In his childhood and youth the subject <jf our 
memoir suffered much sickness, and gave little 
promise either of bodily or mental vigour; but, as 
he grew up, his constitution improved, ami he began 
to evince that irresistilde pro])ensity to reading, or 
rather devouring all books that came in his way, 
which ever afterwards marked his character. It was 
fortunate for him that he was not bereft of his 
natural guardian until he was considerably advanced 
in life, for he was quite unfit to push his own way in 
the world, the uncommon simplicity of his character 
rendering him the easy dupe of the designing and 
knavish. He indeed entered into business for a 
short time, as a manufacturer, with his characteristic 
ardour, but finding himself unsuccessful, he betook 
himself to another and more laborious mode of 
making a livelihood, but one for which he was far 
better qualified, namely, the private teaching of 
Greek and Latin to advanced students. But as his 
father, with parental prudence, had settled a small 
annuity upon him, he was enabled to devote a con- 
siderable portion of his time to those studies and 
researches to which his natural inclination early led 
him, and which he only ceased to prosecute with his 
life. Mr. Bell used to advert with feelings of 
peculiar satisfaction to the meetings of a little weekly 
society which, during this period of his history, were 
held at his house and under his auspices, and at 
which the members read essays and debated ques- 
tions for their mutual entertainment and improve- 
ment. On all these occasions, Mr. Bell never failed 
to contrilnite his full share to the evening's proceed- 
ings, and, when faiily excited, would astonish and 
delight his associates, particularly the younger part 
of them, with the extent and variety of his learning, 
and the ast(jnishing volul)ility with which he jioured 
forth the treasures of his capacious and well-furnished 
mind on almost every possible topic of speculation 
or debate. 

Mr. Bell's fin,t appearance as an author was made 
about the year 1S15, when he contributed ^cver,•■.l 
valuable chapters to the Glas^-m' (Jio;^rapJiy — a work 
which had an extensive circulation, publi>hed in fiNC 
volumes Svo, by the house of KhuU, lUackie. i.^' Co., 
and which became the foundation of Mr. bill s 
System of Popular and Sc:ait:fu- Gec:^ra;I:y. In 1S24 
he published — in conjunction with a ymu-.g (u.i-.;i'W 
linguist of great ^irnniise, named Ji-lni Ikll. wIm 
died January I, 1S26. but no relative cf tl;e sr.l- cct 
of this memoir — a tliin Svo volr.nie. entitled ( •..'.- 
eal Kesearcl'.es in J^ht'cio. y aiui (/V-\v.;,'', ; . I lie 
philologist contriluiteil t«n artiek> t-' t!.^' v-.^i-.n-.e, 
the one a 'T\evie\\- of Ji>n.e>" (;ra:..nia:. :sA :e.c 
other a '"Review of an .\rn!i:c \ < •> .1 ;;..-.i;.' ."n.d 
Index to Riehard^on'> Arabic ( ir.nr.ir.nr. I'V Innies 
NoMe, Teacher of I.nn-u.i-e-;. in Iviin! ;:r-!;." b. -th 
of which are cliaractcri.-'.d jiv a nvir.r.^c r.-,;i-.n;n;.inre 
with the subjects uiv.ier di-cii-siL.n. '1 lie ^;t. ^^r.w her's 



I20 



JAMES BELL JOHN BELL. 



contribution consisted of a very elaborate "Examina- 
tion of the Various Opinions that in Modem Times 
have been held respecting the Sources of the Ganges, 
and the Correctness of the Lamas' Map of Thibet," 
which elicited high encomiums from some of the 
leading periodicals of the day. 

Geography was the science around which as a 
nucleus all his sympathies gathered, as if by an in- 
voluntary and irresistible tendency. To it he con- 
secrated the labour of his life; it was the favourite 
study of his earlier years, and his okl age continued 
to be cheered by it. Li everything belonging to this 
science there was a marvellous quickness and ac- 
curacy of perception — an extreme justness of observa- 
tion and inference about him. When the conversa- 
tion turned upon any geographical subject, his ideas 
assumed a kind of poetical inspiration, and flowed on 
in such unbroken and close succession, as to leave no 
opportunity to his auditors of interposing a question 
or pursuing a discussion. Once engaged, there was 
no recalling him from his wild excursive range — on he 
went, revelling in the intensity of his own enjoyment, 
and bearing his hearers along with him over chains 
of mountains and lines of rivers, until they became 
utterly bewildered by the rapidity with which the 
physical features of every region of the globe were 
made to pass in panoramic succession before them. 

From liis childhood Mr. Bell had been subject to 
severe attacks of asthma. These gradually assumed 
a more alarming character, and ultimately compelled 
him to leave Glasgow for a residence in the country. 
The place which he selected for his retirement was 
a humble cottage in the neighbourhood of the village 
of Campsie, about twelve miles north of Glasgow. 
Here he spent the last ten or twelve years of his life 
in much domestic comfort and tranquillity. 

He was abstemious in his general habits; and 
his only earthly regret — at least the only one which 
he deemed of sufficient consequence to make matter 
of conversation — was the smallness of his library, 
aud his want of access to books. Yet it is astonish- 
ing how little in the republic either of letters or of 
science he allowed to escape him. His memory 
was so retentive, that nothing which he had once 
read was ever forgotten by him. This extraordinary 
faculty enabled him to execute his literary commis- 
sions with a much more limited apparatus of books, 
than to others less gifted would have been an indis- 
pensable requisite. 

The closing scene of Mr. Bell's life was calm and 
peaceful He had, as already mentioned, long 
suffered violently from asthma. This painful disease 
gradually gaJHed upon his constitution, and became 
more severe in its periodical attacks, and tlie ex- 
hausted powers of nature finally sunk in the struggle. 
He expired on the 3d of May, 1833, in the sixty- 
fourth year of his age, and was buried, at his own 
express flesire, in the old churchyard of Campsie — 
a beautiful and sequestered spot. 

In forming an estimate of Mr. Bell's literary 
character, we must always keep in view the diffi- 
culties with which he had to stniggle in his unwearied 
])ursuit of knowledge. He was without fortune, 
without powerful friends, and destitute, to a great 
extent, of even the common apixiratus of a scholar. 
He laboured also under defects of ])hysical organiza- 
tion which would have chilled and utterly repressed 
any mind less ardent and enthusiastic than his own 
in the pursuit of knowledge: yet he surmounted 
every obstacle, and gained for himself a distinguished 
place among British geogra])hers, in des]5ite both of 
his hard fortune and infirm liealth. Many men have 
made a more brilliant dis]5lay witli inferior talents 
and fewer accomplishments; but none ever possessed 



a more complete master}' over their favourite science, 
and could bring to any related task a greater amount 
of accurate and varied knowledge. That he was an 
accomplished classical scholar is apparent from the 
immense mass of erudite allusions which his writings 
present; but he was not an exact scholar. He knew 
little of tlie niceties of language; his compositions 
are often inelegant and incorrect; he had no idea of 
elaborating the expression of his thoughts, but wrote 
altogether without attention to effect, and as if there 
were no such things as order in thinking and method 
in composition. It would be doing him injustice, 
however, while on this point, not to allow that his 
later writings exhibit a closer connection of ideas, 
and greater succinctness of mental habits than his 
earlier jiroductions. 

Besides the earlier publications already adverted 
to, Mr. Bell edited an edition of Rolliii's Aticiciit 
History including the volume on the "Arts and 
Sciences of the Ancients." This work, published 
in Glasgow, in three closely printed octavo volumes, 
bears ample evidence to the industry, research, and 
sagacity of the editor. The notes are of great extent, 
and many of them, on the geograjJiy of the ancients, 
on the bearing of history on prophecy, more particu- 
larly the prophecies of Daniel, or such notes as those 
on the retreat of the ten thousand Greeks, tlie march 
of Hannibal across the Alps, and the ruins of Babylon, 
amount to discussions of considerable length. 

His other great work was his System of Geography, 
of which it is sufficient to say, that it has been pro- 
nounced decidedly superior as a popular work to 
that of Make Brun, and on this account was subse- 
quently republished in America. In this country it 
obtained a very extensive circulation. The prepara- 
tion of these works, and of materials left incomplete 
for a General Gazetteer, occupied a great many years 
of Mr. Bell's life. He also took a lively interest in 
the success of several scientific periodicals, and aided 
their progress by mmierous valuable contributions 
from his own pen. In all his writings, from the 
causes already assigned, there is too little effort at 
analysis and compression. Much might with advan- 
tage liave been abridged, and much pared off. \\\ 
his System of Geography, he occasionally borrowed 
the correcting pen of a friend, hence its composition 
is more regulated and chastenetl. 

Mr. Bell's moral characterwas unimpeachable. lie 
was remarkable for jilain, undissembling honesty, 
and the strictest regard to tnith. In all that con- 
stituted practical inde]5endence of character, he was 
well furnished; he could neither brook d<;j:)endence 
nor stoop to complaint. He was in the strictest 
sense of the word a i)ious man. He concurred with 
his whole heart in that inter]iretation of the doctrines 
of the Bible commonly called the Calvinistic; but 
in no sense of the word was he sectarian in spirit; 
he had no bigotry or intolerance of opinion on reli- 
gious points, althougli few could wield the massive 
weapons of theological controversy with greater 
vigour and effect. 

BELL, John, of Antermony, a traveller of tlie 
eighteenth century, was the son of Patrick Bell, the 
rei)resentative of that old and respectable family, 
and of Anabel Stirling, daughter of Mungo Stirling 
of Craigbarnet. He was born in i6gi, and, after 
receiving a classical education, turned his attention 
to the study of medicine. On passing as physician, 
he determined to visit foreign countries, but we shall 
insert this part of his history in Mr. Bell's own %\ ords. 
"In my youth," says he, "I had a strong desire of 
seeing foreign parts; to satisfy which inclination, 
after liaving obtained, from some persona of worth, 



JOHN BELL. 



recommendatory letters to Dr. Areskine, chief 
physician and privy counsellor to the Czar Peter L, I 
embarked at London, in the month of July, 1714, on 
board the Prosperity of Ramsgate, Captain Emerson, 
for St. Petersburg;. On my arrival there, I was 
received by Dr. Areskine in a very friendly manner, 
to whom I communicated my intentions of seeking 
an opportunity of visiting some parts of Asia, at least 
those parts which border on Russia. Such an 
opiJortunity soon presented itself, on occasion of an 
embassy then preparing from his czarish majesty to 
the Sophy of Persia." — {.Preface to his travels. ) The 
ambassador fortunately applied to Dr. Areskine to 
recommend some one skilled in physic and surgerj* 
to go in his suite, and Mr. Bell was soon afterwards 
engaged in the service of the Russian emperor, lie 
accordingly left St. Petersburg on the 15th of July, 
1715, and proceeded to Moscow, from thence to 
Cazan, and down tlie Volga to Astracan. The 
embassy then sailed down the Caspian Sea to 
Derbend, and journeyed by Mougan, Tauris, and 
Saba, to Lspahan, where they arrived on the 14th of 
March, 171 7. They left that city on the 1st of 
September, and returned to St. Petersburg on the 
30th December, 1 7 18, after having travelled across 
the country from .SaratofT. On his arrival in the 
capital, Mr. Bell found that his friend and patron 
Dr. Areskine had died about six weeks before, but 
he had now secured the friend^ihip of the ambassa- 
dor, and upon hearing that an embassy to China was 
preparing, he easily obtained an a]5i)ointment in it 
through his influence. Tlie account of his journey 
to Cazan, and through Siberia to China, is by far 
the most complete and interesting part of his travels. 
His descrii)tion of the manners, customs, and super- 
stitions of the inhabitants, and of the Delay-lama and 
Chmese wall, deserve j^iartiailarly to be noticed. 
They arrived at Pekin "after a tedious journey of 
exactly sixteen months." Mr. Bell has left a very 
full account of occurrences during his residence in 
the capital of China. The embassy left that city on 
the 2d of Marcij, 1 72 1, and arrived at Moscow on 
the 5th of January, 1722. 

The war between Russia and Sweden was now 
concluded, and the czar had determined to under- 
take an expedition into Persia, at the request of the 
sophy, to assist that prince against the AlTghans, his 
subjects, who had seized upon Kandahar, and pos- 
sessed themselves of several provinces on the frontiers 
towards India. Mr. Bell's former journey to Persia 
gave him peculiar advantages, and he was accord- 
ingly engaged to accompany the army to Derbent, 
from which he returned in Deceml)er, 1722. .Soon 
afterwards he revisited his native country, and re- 
turned to St. Petersburg in 1734. In 1737 he was 
sent to Constantinople by the Russian chancellor, 
and Mr. Rondeau the British mini.>ter at the Russian 
court.' I le seems now to have abandoned the public 
service, and to have settled at Constantinople as a 
merchant. About 1746 he married Mary Peters, a 
Russian lady, and determined to return to Scotland. 
He spent the latter part of his life on his estate, and 
in the enjoyment of the society of his friends. At 
Icngtii, after a long life spent in active beneficeiK:e, 
and exertions for the good of mankind, he died at 
Antermony on the Ist of July, 1780, at tlie advanced 
age of eighty-nine. 

The only work written by Mr. Bell is his Traz-els 
from St. Petersbiiri^ in Russia to various parts of 
Asui, to which reference has already been made. It 
was printed in 2 volumes ([uarto by Robert and 
Andrew Foulis, in 1763, and published by sul3scrip- 

1 M'Urc's liiitoy c/ Glas^cv:, new tdiii-a, p. :i^ 



tion. "The history of this book," says the Quarterly 
Ke7>ie-ui, "is somewhat curious, and not generally 
known. For many years after Mr. Bell returned 
from his travels, he used to amuse his friends with 
accounts of what he had seen, refreshing his recollec- 
tion from a sini])le diary of occurrences and observa- 
tion;;. The Earl (Jranville, then president of the 
council, on hearing some of his adventures, prevailed 
on him to thnnv his notes together into the form of 
a narrative, which, when done, pleased him so much 
that he sent the manuscri])t to Dr. Robertson, with 
a particular request that he would revise and jiut it 
into a fit state for the press. The literar)' avocations 
of the Scottish historian at that time not allowing 
him to undertake the task, he recommended Mr. 
Barron, a professor in the university of .Alx'rdeen, 
and on this gentleman consulting Dr. Robertson as 
to the style and the book of travels which he would 
recommend him to adopt for his guiile, the historian 
replied, 'Take Gullivers Travels for your model, 
and you cannot go wrong.' He did so, and '■ BelFs 
Travels^ have all the simjilicity of Gulliver, with the 
advantage which truth always carries over fiction."* 

BEILL, John, an eminent surgeon in Edinburgh, 
and of distinguished literary qualifications, v\as born 
in 1 762. He was the second son of the Rev. William 
Bell, a clergvman of the Scottish Episcopal Church, 
established at Edinburgh. His mother was the 
daughter of Mr. Morrice, also a memlx-r of the 
Scottish Episcopal Church. Mr. John Bell, after 
receiving a lii)eral education, became the pupil of 
Mr. Alexander Wood, surgeon, who was long cele- 
brated in lulinburgh as a medical practitioner. 
From the first, Mr. I]ell devoted himself to his pro- 
fessional studies with that enthusiastic ardour so 
characteristic of genius, and almost always the pre- 
cursor of distinction. After completing his profes- 
sional education, he travelled for a short time in 
Russia and the north of Europe; and on his return 
commenced his professional duties by delivering 
lectures on surgery and midwifery. These lectures, 
M hich he delivered Ixjtween the years 17S6 and 1796, 
were very highly esteemed, and speedily brought 
him into practice as a consulting and operating 
surgeon. The increase of his private practice, in- 
deed, rendered it necessarv' for him, in 1796, to 
discontinue his lectures, and from tliat time forward 
he devoted himself to his patients, and to the pre- 
paration of his several pu!)lications. 

Por upwards of twenty years Mr. Bell may be 
said to have stood at the head of his jirofession in 
Edinburgh as an ojierator. Patients came to him 
from all quarters, both of .Scotland and England, and 
even from the Continent, and during that inten.-al he 
performed some of the most delicate and difficult 
operations in surgery. Nor was his celebrity confined 
to Edinburgh. He was generally known, b')lh in tliis 
country and throughout the world, as one of the 
most distinguished men in his ]irofess:on; and his 
works show that his reputation was well I'oundcd. 

Early in 1816 he was thrown by a sjiirited b.orse, 
and aj^pears never to have entirely recovered Iji ni 
the effects of tlie accident. In tlie ar.tunm >:■•{ il'.r.t 
year he made an excursion, partly on account i>f h.is 
heallh, to London; thence he ]irocetfled to P.iris, 
and after^vards pursued his journey >ou■,h\^'ar^!s. vi-.t- 
ing the most ilistingui>hed cities 01 I'.aly. DiiriTg 
his residence on the Continent, he w.i^ trr.ited in tf.e 
most fiatiering manner l>y the mcr.ii'-. r^ "f ii:-- f'wn 
science; ami his countrymen, \\\\-\ r.ltcr the peace 



- Qu 



JOHN BELL WILLL\M BELLENDEN. 



of 1815, had gone to the Continent in great num- 
bers, gladly took his surgical assistance. In Paris, 
Naples, and Rome in particular, his numerous patients 
occupied him perhaps too exclusively; for his health 
continued to decline, and he died at Rome, April 15, 
1S20, in the fifty-seventh year of his age. 

Mr. Bell very early in life became impressed with 
a high notion of the advantage of combining general 
accomplishments with professional skill; he there- 
fore spared no pains to qualify himself in every way 
to assume a favourable position in society. He was 
a good classical scholar, and so general a reader that 
there were few works of any note in literature, either 
ancient or modern, with which he was not familiar. 
This was remarkably shown in his library, in which 
there was hardly a volume on any subject which did 
not bear traces of having been carefully jierused and 
noted by him. His practice was to make annota- 
tions on the margin as he read; and considering the 
engrossing nature of his professional labours, and 
the several works in which he was himself engaged, 
nothing is more extraordinary than the evidence 
which is still in existence of the extent and variety 
of his miscellaneous reading. 

The information which he tlius acquired was not 
lost upon him; he was polished and easy in his man- 
ners, his perception of the ludicrous was keen, and 
the tact with which he availed himself of his exten- 
sive reading and general knowledge of all the in- 
teresting topics of the day will be long remembered 
by those who had the pleasure of his acquaintance. 
His conversational powers, indeed, were of the veiy 
highest order; and as he had great urbanity and kind- 
ness of manner, and was happily free from that affec- 
Tation by which good talkers are sometimes distin- 
guished, there were few of his contem]5oraries whose 
society was more generally courted by the upper 
classes in Edinburgh, and none who were Itetter 
fitted to adorn and enliven the circle in which he 
moved. 

Mr. Bell's notions of the dignity of his profession 
were very high, and no man perhaps ever discliarged 
his professional duties with more disinterested huma- 
nity and honourable independence. His genero- 
sity to those whose circumstances required pecuniar}' 
aid was well known, and his contempt for anything 
approaching to what he thought mean or narrow- 
minded was b')undless, and frequently expressed in 
no very measured terms. The warmth of his temper, 
h<jwever, involved him in several misunderstandings 
with his professional brethren; the most remark- 
at)le of which was that which brought him and 
Dr. Gregory into collision. The question on which 
these two distinguished men took opposite sides 
related to the right of the junior members of the 
College of .Surgeons of Edinburgh to perform opera- 
tions in the Royal Infirmary. This dispute divided 
the medical men of Ivlinburgh towards the close of 
the la^t century; and Dr. Gregoiyand Mr. Bell wrote 
several volumes ajjout it. But, although great wit 
and much happy sarcasm were displayed on both 
sides, it is impos^il>le to look back to this dissension 
without feeling regret that two of the most eminent 
medical men of tlieir day should have wasted their 
ingenuity and high talents in acrimonious and un- 
prtjfitable cf)ntrovcrsy, on a tojiic of ejihemeral in- 
terest and comparatively minor importance, Mr. 
Bell's principal publication in this controversy was 
entitled Letters on Professional Character and Man- 
ners; on the Education of a Sitri:;eon, and the Duties 
and Qualifications of a Physician; addressed to fames 
Gregory, Af.D. Edinburgh, iSio. It is a large 
octavo volume, and is charactcriz-cd liy extraordinary 
acrunonv. 



In the fine arts, Mr. Bell's taste was very correct. 
As a painter and draughtsman his talents were far 
above mediocrity; and the anatomical drawings by 
which his works are illustrated have been much ad- 
mired. He was also a proficient in music, with more 
taste, however, than execution; and as Mrs. Bell 
was also a highly accomplished musician, his musical 
parties, although conducted on a scale of expense 
which his circumstances hardly warranted, assembled 
at his house the elite of Edinburgh society. He had 
no family, and his whole house was laid out for this 
species of display — a foible which those who were 
inclined to laugh at his expense did not overlook, 
and which was to a certain extent censurable, since 
his income, although very large, was never equal to 
his expenditure. 

Mr. Bell's personal appearance was good. Al- 
though considerably under the middle size, he was 
exceedingly well proportioned, very active and studi- 
ously elegant in his movements. II is head was well 
formed, his features regular, his eyes keen and pene- 
trating, and his whole expression intellectual and in- 
telligent in no ordinary degree. He was also re- 
markable for the good taste which he exhibited in 
his dress; and was altogether a person whom even a 
stranger could not have passed without recognizing 
as no ordinary man. 

The limits of this work do not admit of an analysis 
of Mr. Bell's writings. The best is his treatise on 
Gunshot Wounds, to enable him to prepare which 
he passed some weeks amongst the wounded men of 
Lord Duncan's fleet, after the battle of Camperdown. 

The following is a complete list of his professional 
works: — I. llic Anatojny of the Human Body, vol. 
i. 8vo, 1793, containing the Bones, Muscles, and 
Joints; vol. ii. 1797, containing the Heart and Arteries; 
vol. iii. 1802, containing the Anatomy of tlte Brain, 
Description of the Course of the Ner7<es, and the Ana- 
tomy of the Blyc and Ear; ivith Plates by Charles 
Bell, third edition, 3 vols. 8vo, 1811. 2. Engrav- 
ings of the Bones, Muscles, and Joints, illustrating the 
first volume of the Anatomy of the Human Body, 
drawn and engraved by himself, royal 4to, 1794, 
third edition. 3. Engra^'ings of the Arteries, illus- 
trating the second volume of the Anatomy of the 
Human Body, royal 4to, 1801; third edition, 8vo, 
1 8 10. i^.DiscoursesontheNatureand Cureof Wounds, 
Svo, 1795; third edition, 1812. 5. Ansiver for the 
Junior Members of the Koyal College of Surgeons to 
the A/emorial of Dr. James Gregory, to the Managers 
of the Koyal hifirmary, 8vo, 1800. 6. Ihe Prin- 
ciples of Surgery, 3 vols. 4to, 1801-1808. 7. Letters 
on Professional Character, &c. His Observations 
on Italy is a posthumous work, which was edited 
by his respected friend Bishop Sandford of Edin- 
burgh. 

Mr. I3cll married Miss Congleton, daughter of 
Dr. Congleton of Edinburgh. His eldest brother 
was Robert Bell, advocate, professor of convey- 
ancing to the Society of Writers to the Signet; 
author of the Scotch Law Dictionary, and of several 
other works on tlie law of Scotland; who died in 
1816. John liell's immediately younger luothers 
were, Ccotge Josejih Bell, advocate, professor of the 
law of Scotland in tlie imivcrsity of Edinburgh, 
and author of Commentaries on the Imw of Scotland, 
a work of high authorilv ; and .Sir Charles Bull, 
E.R..S. of London, the distinguished anatomist and 
physiologist. It is rare to find so many members 
of the same family so favourably known to the 
public. 

BELLENDEN, \V 1 1,1. 1 AM, more commonly known 

bv his Latin name of GuUclmub Bellcndcnus, is one 



WILLIAM BELLENDEX. 



123 



of those Scotsmen of a former age, who are esteemed 
in the general literary world as an honour to their 
country, hut with whom that country itself is scarcely 
at all acquainted. As there were many great but 
unrecorded heroes before Agamemnon, so may it be 
sai<l that there have flourished, out of Scotland, many 
ilhi->trious Scotsmen, whose names have not been 
celebrated in that country. It is time, however, that 
this should cease to be the case, at least in reference 
to William Ik-llenden, whose intellect appears to 
have been one of most extraordinary character, and 
whose intellectual eftbrts. if in a shape to command 
more extensive appreciation, would certainly be 
considered a great addition to those productions 
which reflect honour upon his native country. 

William Hellenden was uncjuestionably a member 
of that family whose name has been variously spelled 
Hallenden, Ballantyn, and latterly Ballantyne, and 
which has producetl several men eminent in Scottish 
literature. He lived in the reign of James VI., to 
whom he was Mai^istcr Suppluiiin Libellorttm, or 
reader of private petitions, an office probably con- 
ferred upon him in consideration of his eminent 
learning. King James, whose many regal faults were 
in some measure redeemed by his love of literature 
and patronage of literary men, provided Bellenden 
with the means of leading a life of studious retire- 
ment at the French capital, where he is said to have 
afterwards become professor of humanity, and an 
advocate in the parliament of I'aris. 

Bellenden's first work, entitled Ciceronis Priuccps, 
and published, apparently without his name, in 
1608, is a treatise on the duties of a prince, formed 
out of passages of the works of Cicero referring to 
that subject. l"o tlie Ciceronis Priuccps, in which 
Bellenden has only the merit of an ingenious collector, 
was prefixed an original essay, styled Tractatits dc 
ProccssH ct Scriptoribus Kci Politicic, in which there 
is a rich vein of masculine sense and fervent piety, 
while the origin of our errors in religion, and of our 
defects in policy and learning, is traced out with 
considerable accuracy and erudition. In this treatise, 
the author, while he condemns tlie monstrous tenets 
of ancient idolatry, and the gross corruptions of 
philosophy, bestows many just encomiums on the 
wisdom and patriotism of some ancient legislators. 

Bellenden next published a treatise, formed like 
the foregoing from detached passages in Cicero, re- 
garding the duties of the consul, senator, and senate 
among the Romans. It was entitled Ciccrotiis Con- 
sul, Senator, Popiilusqiie Kcmauiis: iUustratus publict 
obse>~'atione juris, grai'issimi iisiis disciplind, admin- 
istrandi ternperata rationc: notatis inclinationibns 
temporum in Pep. ct actis rerum in Senatit : qiiic a 
Ciccroniana nonduni edita projliixere mcnioria, an- 
n rum DCC.X. con:^csia in libros xz-i. Dc static rcrum 
R.'manorum unde jam manant Ciceronis Priuccps, 
digitus habitus summorum Icctioue principum. l-Jel- 
lenden has here shown, not only the duties of a 
senator or statesman, but upon what basis the rights 
of a free but jealous people are erected, and the 
hallowed care th'^e institutions demand which have 
descended to us from our ancestors. This work was 
published at I'aris in 1612, and, like the former, 
was dedicated to Henry. I'rince of Wales. C)n the 
title-page the author is termed "Magister Sup]ilicum 
Lil)ellorum augu->ti Regis M.ignx' Britannia;',"' from 
which it wouM apjiear that either there is a mistake 
in describing him as master of requests to the King 
of Scotland, or lie must have been subsequently ]ire- 
ferred \.o tiie same office f)r ( ireat Britain. The 
onice, since he reside 1 at I'aris, must have been a 
sinecure, and was pri'baMy given lo iiiin as a means 
of suslainin'' him in literarv leisure. 



The next work of Bellenden was entitled Dc Statu 
Prisci Orhis, in Rclii^ionc, A'c Politico, et iMeris, Itbcr 
unus. It was printed, but may scarcely be describe<I 
as published, in 1615. This is the mo^t original of 
Bellenden's works. The exf)ressions and sentiments 
are all his own, e.xce[)ting the quotations which he 
takes occasion U> introduce from his favourite Cicero. 
In this W(jrk he h.as "brought to light, from the 
most remote anticjuity, many facts which had W-en 
buried in oblivion. Whatever relates to the disci- 
pline of the Persians and Egyptians, which was 
obscure in itself, and very variously dispersed, he 
has carefully collected, placed in one uniform point 
of view, and polished with diligent acuteness. In 
a manner the most i)lain and satisfactory, he has 
described the first origin of states, their jirogressive 
political advances, and how they differed from each 
other. Those fabulous inventions with whieh Greece 
has encumbered histor\', he ex[)lains and refutes. 
Philosophy owes him much. He has confuted all 
those systems which were wild and extravagant, and 
removed the difficulties from such as were in their 
operation subservient to religious piety. But he has 
in particular confirmed and dignified, with every 
assistance of solid argument, whatever tended to 
serve the great truths of revelation. Much, how- 
ever, as he has been involve<l in the gloom of ancient 
times, he in no one instance assumes the character of 
a cold unfeeling antiquary; he never employs his 
talents upon those intricate and useless questions, in 
endeavouring to explain which many luckless anfl 
idle theologists torment themselves and lose their 
labour. The style of Bellendenus, in this perftirm- 
ance, is perspicuous, and elegant without affectation. 
The different parts of the work are so well and so 
judiciously disposed, that we meet with nothing 
harsh and dissonant, no awkward interval or interru])- 
tion, nothing jilaced where it ought not to remain.' 

All these three works — namely, the Priuccps, the 
Consul, and the Dc Statu Prisci Orbis — were repub- 
lished in 1616 in a united form, under the general 
title De Statu, Libri Trcs. Prince Henry being 
now dead, the whole work was dedicated anew to 
his surviving brother Charles; a circumstance wliich 
aflbrded the author an opportunity of pacing z-.w 
ingenious compliment to the latter prince: 

" Uno .ivu'.so non deficit a'ter. 

Aureus, et siiiiili froncv;icit virg.i n.c;ta!lo." 

Of the justness of this eulogy the politician may have 
some doubt, but the man of lecling w ill be captivated 
by its elegance and pathos. 

The last work which Bellenden himself puljlislud 
is of ver\' small extent, consisting merely of t\\o 
short poems: Carol i Primi ct J/cnriciC Mariu, 7\:i::s 
ct Kci^iucc Ma^n<c Pritannia, ice. Kpithalamnnn : ct 
in ipsas augiistissimas uuptias, Pauci:;\Tic!i?n Carnu': 
ct Ploi^wa. Paris, 1675, 4to. ^^ would appear tl;r:t 
Bellenden did not soon forget the kind ]iatrori.''.;^'e 
which he had experienced in 'in King Jnmes, 1 i;t 
transferred his gratitude, with his loyalty, to the 
descendants of that prince. Thi^ is the 'iiily kiiov. :i 
specimen of Bellenden's efforts in ]ioetn.'. 

The Dc Statu, I.ibri Trcs, whieh jeihr,] s wltc 
never ver\- extensively difl'useil, had la;;er'.} I'ec ::,e 
50 extremely scarce, as only to be know;; ly ir.-i.e 
to the most of scholars, from this o! -ci::;;y li;e 
work was rescued in 17S7. by I »r. >.T:r.;:-, I I'.i:r. ;!.e 
most eminent Briti>h I.atiiii-t ot i;i">icr:. ■;;:;e--. J 'r. 
i'arr republished it in an elegant 1. n;i, ^^ ;;:i a i re!;"!-.;-, 
whieh. tliouL;h embracing a siiiL.'ui.-'.r j-:i;.!'!e ol <\\\t- 
ieet-. and hot free Iran the e]:a:,:e ■ f ; fiai;trv, ;. 



i i.>rr-= I'.- 



124 



WILLIAM BELLENDEN 



WILLIAM BERRY. 



justly looked upon as one of the most admirable 
specimens of modern Latin which we possess. Imi- 
tating the example of Bellendenus, who prefixed 
a dedication to each of his three books, the learned 
editor inscribed them anew to three great men of 
modern times, Edward Burke, Lord North, and 
Charles James Fox, who were then the leaders of 
his own party in British politics. In the preface he 
introduced a high allegorical eulogy upon these 
statesmen, which was admired as a singularly nervous 
piece of composition, though there were, of course, 
different opinions as to the justness of the paneg\'ric. 
lie also exposed tlie plagiary wliich Middleton, in 
composing his Life of Cicero, had committed upon 
the splendid stores of Bellenden. 

While Bellenden was employed in writing his 
tripartite work, Dc Statu, he had Cicero constantly 
before him. "His warmest attachment, and in- 
creasing admiration," to quote the words of Dr. 
Parr, "were necessarily attracted to the character 
whose writings were the object of his unremitting 
attention; whose expressions were as familiar to 
him as possible; and whose various and profound 
learning occupied all the faculties of his soul." He 
now commenced a still more extensive and lal:)orious 
cento of the writings of the Roman orator, which he 
concluded in sixteen books, and which, with the 
addition of similar centoes of the writings of Seneca 
and I'liny the Elder, was to bear the name, Dc 
Trihus Lii?>iiiiibns Romancrum. The Ciceronian 
cento, the only one he lived to complete, is justly 
considered a most extraordinary performance. By 
an exertion of fictitious machinery, akin to the 
modern historical romance, Cicero is introduced as 
if he had spoken or written the whole from begin- 
ning to end. The first seven books give a very con- 
cise abstract of the Roman history, from the founda- 
tion of the city to the 647th year, in which he was 
born. Then he becomes more particular in the 
account of his own times, and enlarges very fully on 
all that happened after his first appearance in public 
business. He gives an account of the most remark- 
alile of his orations and epistles, and the occasions 
on which they were written, as also of such of his 
philosophical works as have come down to us, and 
of some otlier pieces that are now lost, ending with 
a letter he is supposed to have written to Octavianus, 
afterwards named Augustus, which letter, however, 
is supposed to be spurious. There cannot be a more 
complete history of the life of Cicero, or of the 
tumultuous times in wliich he lived, than this work, 
all of which, by an exquisite ingenuity, is so faith- 
fully compiled from tiie known woz'ks of the orator, 
that probably there is not in the whole book a single 
expression, perha])s not a single word, which is not 
to be found in that great storeliouse of philosophical 
eloquence. Nor is there any incoherence or awk- 
wardness in this re-arrangement of Cicero's language; 
but, on tlie contrary, the matter flows as gracefully 
as in the original. "Whatever we find," says I'arr, 
"in the different writings of Cicero, elegantly ex- 
pressed, or acutely conceived, Bellendenus has not 
only collected in one view, but elucidated in the 
clearest manner. He, therefore, who peruses this per- 
formance with the attention which it merits, will 
possess all the treasures of antitiuity, all the energy of 
tlie mightiest exani])les. He will obtain an adequate 
knowledge of the Roman law and system of juris- 
prudence, and may draw, as from an inexhaustible 
source, an abundance of ex]iressions, the most ex- 
quisite in their kind." In the opinion of another 
critic,' it is inconceivable that Bellenden could have 



1 The late Karl of liiicdan, who liad tlic extraordinary fur- 
tiiae to pobSC:5.s a copy of tliis ra.-i; book. 



composed this singular work without having the 
whole of the writings of Cicero, and all the collateral 
authorities, in his mind at once, as it must have been 
quite impossible to perform such a task by turning 
over the leaves of the books, in order to find the 
different expressions suited to the various occasions 
where they were required. 

After the death of Bellenden, the date of which is 
only known to have been posterior to 1625, the 
manuscript of his great work fell into the hands of 
one Toussaint du Bray, who printed it at Paris in 
163 1 or 1634, and dedicated it to King Charles I. of 
Great Britain. It is alleged that the iirincipal part 
of the impression, about a thousand copies, was 
shipped for sale in Britain, and was lost on the 
passage, so that only a few copies survived. The 
work therefore fell at once into obscurity, and in 
a few years was scarcely known to exist. One copy 
having found its way to the Cambridge University 
Library, fell into the hands of Conyers Middleton, 
the keeper of that institution, who seems to have 
adopted the idea of making it the groundwork for 
a life of Cicero under his own name. Hence has 
arisen one of the most monstrous instances of literary 
plagium which modern times have witnessed. The 
work of Middleton at once attained to great reputa- 
tion, and chiefly through that skilful arrangement 
of the writings of the orator himself which Bellenden 
had provided to his hands. The theft M'as first 
denounced by Warton, and subsequently made clear 
by Dr. Parr in his preface to the De Statu. 

It is impossible to dismiss the life and singular 
writings of William Bellenden, without a passing 
expression of regret, that so much ingenuity, so 
much learning, so much labour, may be expended, 
without producing even the remuneration of a name 
— for Bellenden, to use a phrase of liuchanan, is 
a light rather than a name. His last work extended 
to 824 pages in folio, and he contemplated other two 
of similar size, and equal labour. Yet all this was 
so futile, that the very next generation of his own 
countrymen do not appear to have known that such 
a man ever existed. Even after all the care of 
bibliographers and others, which has searched out 
the few facts embraced by this inq^erfect narrative, 
the name of Bellenden is only known in connection 
with certain works, which are, it is true, reputed to 
be admirable of their kind, but, for every practical 
purpose, are almost as entirely lost to the world at 
large, as those libri perditi of Cicero, ^\•hich he has 
himself alluded to with so much regret. 

BERNARD, made abbot of Aberbrothock in 1303, 
and the first chancellor of King Robert Bruce, after 
his assumption of the crown in 1306, deserves a place 
in this work, as the supposed writer of that spirited 
remonstrance which the Scottish nobility and barons 
transmitted, in 1318, to the Roman pontiff, asserting 
the indejiendency of their country. He held the 
great seal till his death in 1327. Crawford sujiposcs 
that his surname was Linton. 

BERRY, Wii.T.iAM, an ingenious artist, was bom 
about the year 1730, and bred to the business of a 
seal-engraver. A Iter serving an apprenticeship under 
a Mr. i'roctorat Edinburgh, he commenced l)usiness 
for himself in that city, and soon became distin- 
guished for the elegance of his designs, and the clear- 
ness and sharpness of his mode of cutting. At this 
time the business of a stone-engraver in the Scottish 
capital was confined to the cutting of ordinary seals, 
and tlie most elaborate work of this kind to engraving 
the armorial bearings of the nobility. Mr. lierry s 
views were for several years confined to this common 



WILLIAM BERRY. 



125 



dnulgcry of his art; but, by studying some ancient 
entagli(js, he at length ventured into that higher 
walk which bears the same relation to seal-engrav- 
ing that historical painting does to portrait-painting. 
The subject he chose for his first essay was a head 
of Sir Isaac Newton, which he executed with such 
precision and delicacy, as astonished all who had an 
opportunity of observing it. The modesty of Mr. 
Herry permitted him to consign this gem to the 
hands of a friend in a retired situation of life, who 
had few opportunities of showing it to others. lie 
resumed his wonted drudgery, and for many years 
"narrowed his mind" to the cutting of heraldic seals, 
while in reality he must have known that his genius 
fitted him for a competition with the highest triumphs 
of Italian art. When he was occasionally asked to 
undertake somewhat finer work, he generally found 
that, though he only demanded perhaps half the 
money which he could have earned in humbler en- 
graving during the same space of time, yet even that 
was grudged by his employers; and lie therefore 
found that mere considerations of worldly prudence 
demanded his almost exclusive attention to the ordi- 
nary walk of his profession. Nevertheless, in the 
course of a few years, the impulse of genius so far 
overcame his scruples, that he executed various 
heads, any one of which would have been sufficient 
to insure him fame among judges of excellence in 
this department of art. Among these were heads 
of Thomson, author of The Si\7sons, Mary Queen of 
Scots, Oliver Cromwell, Julius Cxsar, a young 
Hercules, and Mr. Hamilton of Bangour, the well- 
known poet. Of these only two were copies from 
the antique; and they were executed in the finest 
style of those celebrated entaglios. The young 
Hercules, in particular, possessed an unaffected plain 
simplicity, a union of youthful innocence with 
strength and dignity, which struck every beholder 
as most aj^propriate to that mytliological personage, 
while it was, at the same time, the most difficult of 
all expressions to be hit off by the faithful imitator of 
nature. Berry possessed this perceptive faculty to 
a degree which almost proved an obstruction, rather 
than a help, in his professional career. In his best 
performances he himself remarked defects which no 
one else perceived, and which he believed might 
have been overcome by greater exertion, if for that 
greater exertion he could have spared the necessary 
time. Thus, while others applauded his entaglios, 
he looked upon them with a morbid feeling of vexa- 
tion, arising from the sense of that struggle which 
his immediate personal wants constantly maintained 
with the nobler impulses of art, and to which his 
situation in the world promised no speedy cessation. 
This gave him an aversion to the higher department 
of his art, which, though indulged to his own tem- 
]iorary comfort and the advantage of his family, was 
most unfortunate f )r the world. 

In spite of every disadvantage, the works of Mr. 
r>erry, few as tliey werein number, became gradually 
known in society at large; and some of his piece's 
were c\c\\ brought into competition, by some dis- 
tinguished cognoscenti, with those of Piccler at 
Rome, who had hitlierto been the unapproached 
sovereign of this department of the arts. Although 
the experience of I'iccler was that of a con.-tant 
]iractitii)ner, while Mr. lierry had only attempted a 
few pieces at lung intervals in tlie course of a labo- 
rious life; although llie turnier lived in a country 
where every artit'icial object wa> attuned to the prin- 
cijiles of art, while Mr. Herry was reared in a soil 
remarkable for tiie absence of all such advantages; 
•the latter was by many good judges placed above liis 
Italian contemporary. The respective works of the 



two artists were well known to each other; and each 
declared, with that manly ingenuousness which very 
high genius aUme can confer on the human mind, 
that the other was greatly his superior. 

Mr. Berry posschscd not merely the art of imitat- 
ing busts or figures set before him, in which hecouM 
observe and co])y the prominence or depression of 
the parts; but he possessed a faculty which pre^up- 
])0ses a much nicer discrimination — that of being able 
to execute a figure in rdu-.'o, with perfect justness in 
all its parts, which was copied from a ])ainting or 
drawing upon a flat surface. This was fairly ])ut to the 
test in the head he executed of Hamilton of IJangour. 
That gentleman had been dead several years, when 
his relations wished to have a head of him executed 
by Berry. The artist had himself never seen Mr. 
Hamilton, and there remained no picture of him but 
an imperfect sketch, which was by no means a strik- 
ing likeness. This was put into the hands of Mr. 
Berry by a person who had known the deceased 
])oet, and who pointed out the defects of the resem- 
blance in the best way that words can be made to 
correct things of this nature; and from this jucture, 
with the ideas that Mr. Berry had imbibed from the 
corrections, he made a head which everyone who 
knew Mr. Hamilton allowed to be one of the most 
perfect likenesses that could be wished for. In this, 
as in all his works, there was a correctness in the 
outline, and a truth and delicacy in the expression 
of the features, highly emulous of the best antifpics; 
which were, indeed, the models on which he formed 
his taste. 

The whole number of heads executed by Mr. Berry- 
did not exceed a dozen; but, beside the>e, he exe- 
cuted some full-length figures of both men and ani- 
mals, in his customary style of elegance. His atten- 
tion, however, to the interests of a numerous family 
made him forego those agreeable exertions, for the 
more lucrative though less pleasing em]iloyment of 
cutting heraldic seals, which formed his constant 
employment for forty years together. In this dejiart- 
ment he was, without dispute, the first artist of his 
time; but even here his tnodesty, and that invari- 
able desire of giving perfection to everything he put 
out of his hand, prevented him fromdi-awing such 
emoluments from his labours as they deserved. Of 
this the following anecdote will serve as an illustra- 
tion, and as an additional testimony of his very great 
skill. Henry, Duke of Buccleuch, on succeeding to 
his title and estates, was desirous of having a seal 
cut, with his arms properly blazoned upon it. But, 
as there were no fewer than thirty-two comimrtments 
in the shield, which was of neces>ity confined to a 
very small space, so as to leave room fiir the sup- 
porters and other ornaments, within the compass of 
a seal of ordinary size, he found it a matter of great 
difficulty to get it executed. Though a native of 
Scotland himself, the noble duke had no idea that 
tliere was a man of first-rate eminence in this art in 
lOdinburgh; and accordingly he had applied to ilie 
best scal-engravcrs in Lontioiiand I'aris, all ot whon; 
declared it to be beyond their >kill. .\t tli> time 
Berry was mentioned to him with si;ch jioweriul re- 
commendations that he was induced to | e,\- liin a 
visit, and found him, as u^ual, sea;e I ."t lii> ul.eel. 
The gentleman who had mentioned Mr. \\x\) s 
name to the duke accompanied him on h> \>:t. 
This person, witlioul introducing the lie.ke. >lio\\id 
Mr. Berry tlie improsion of a ~hiell uiiiih the 
duchess-dowager liad got cut a gooil m.'.i'.y ytiirs 
before by a lew in I,i>ndon, now <le,'; !. n'-i which 
had been shown to cth'-rs a- a jMt'.erii: .i-king linn 
if he would cut a >eal the sinie .i~ ti'i.ii. Arer 
examining it a liitle, Mr. Berrv a:i-weied readily 



126 



ALEXANDER BETHUNE. 



that he would. The duke, at once pleased and 
astonished, exclaimed, "Will you, indeed!" Mr. 
Berry, who thought that this implied some doubt of 
his ability to perform what he undertook, was a little 
piqued, and turning round to the duke, whom he 
had never before seen, he said, "Yes, sir; if I do 
not make a better seal than this, I will charge no 
payment for it." The duke, highly pleased, left the 
pattern with Mr. Berry, and went away. The 
original contained, indeed, the various devices of the 
thirty-two compartments distinctly enough to be 
seen; but none of the colours were expressed. Mr. 
Berry, in proper time, finished the seal; on which 
the figures were not only done with superior elegance, 
but the colours on every part so distinctly marked 
that a painter could delineate the whole, or a herald 
blazon it, with perfect accuracy. For this extra- 
ordinary and most ingenious labour he charged no 
more than thirty-two guineas, though the pattern 
seal had cost seventy-five. Thus it was, that, 
though possessed of talents unequalled in tlieir kind, 
at least in Britain, and assiduity not to be surpassed 
— observing at the same time the strictest economy 
in his domestic arrangements — Mr. Ben-y died at 
last, in circumstances far from affluent, June 3, 1783, 
in the fifty-third year of his age, leaving a numerous 
family of children. It had been the lot of this in- 
genious man to toil unceasingly for a whole life, 
without obtaining any other reward than the common 
boon of mere subsistence, wliile his abilities, in 
another sphere, or in an age more qualified to ap- 
preciate and employ them, miglit liave enabled him 
to attain at once to fame and fortune in a very few 
years. His art, it may be remarked, has made no 
particular progress in Scotland in consequence of his 
example. The genius of Berry was solitary, both in 
resjject of place and time, and has never been 
rivalled by any other of his countrymen. It must 
be recorded, to the honour of this unrequited genius, 
tiiat his character in private life was as amiable and 
unassuming as his talents were great; and that his 
conduct on all occasions was ruled by the strictest 
principles of honour and integrity. 

BETHUNE, Alex.-VNDER. This man, and his 
younger l:)rother John, were choice specimens.of that 
intellectual class of Scottish peasantry in which our 
country happily abounds, and of which it is so justly 
proud. Alexander, the subject of the present notice, 
was born at Upper Rankeiilor, in the parish of 
Monimai), in July 1S04. Such was the extreme 
domestic poverty in wliich he was reared, that he 
could not even obtain the ordinary share of a .Scottish 
peasant's education; his whole portion in this respect 
being four or five montlis' attendance at a subscrip- 
tion sch(jol, wlien he was in his sixth year. But his 
mother was a remarkable woman, and it was from 
her that the two l^rothers mainly derived their educa- 
tion, as well as tlieir energetic intellectual character. 
At the raw age of fourteen he was set to break 
stones on the highway, a strong man's occupation, 
by which his tender bones and muscles were sorely 
tried; and at the age of twenty-one he was enabled, 
from the savings of his scanty pay, to enrol himself 
in the evening classes of a school at the hamlet of 
Lochend, near I/nvlores. Naturally desirous of 
emerging from his uncnnif irtahlc jinsition, heljetook 
liimsjlf to weaving with his brother John, but 
scarcely had they man.nged to prDcure the necessary 
ai>i)aratus, wjien the nicrcanlile dc])ressi()n of 1S25 
and 1S26 compelled them lo abandon tlieir hopes of 
the lf)om, and take occujjation as out-door labourers 
at tlie wagi.'s of a shilling a-day. Thus employed in 
such chance toil as he could (;ljtain, .Mexander, in 



1829, while employed in a quarry, was thrown into 
the air by a blast of gunpowder, and so dreadfully 
mangled that his recoveiy was thought hopeless. 
Three years after a disaster of the same character 
befell him, but still more severe, by which he was 
frightfully disfigured, and the effects of which he felt 
till the end of his days. 

Such a scanty education, and subsequent life of 
hardship and penury, were little calculated to foster 
the cultivation of literature: but Alexander Bethune 
was no ordinary character; and those difficulties 
which in others would have extinguished such ambi- 
tion, only confirmed his resolution, and strengthened 
him for the work. Accordingly, while breaking 
stones on the highway, or blasting huge masses in 
the quarry, he had never failed at every interval to 
enlarge his knowledge by reading, and develop his 
intellectual faculties by composition. In 1835 several 
of his productions appeared in Cha7iibcrs'' Edinburgk 
yoiirnal, and in 1838 he completed and published 
a series of 7\iles and Sketches of the Scottish Fcasantry , 
part of which work was written by his brother John. 
After several struggles and changes, which will tall to 
be mentioned in the memoir of the latter, the two 
brothers feueda small pieceof groundnear Newburgh, 
and built there a cottage chiefly with their own 
hands. Here also they prepared and published their 
joint work, entitled Lectures oti Practical Economy, 
which was issued from the press in 1839. After the 
death of John, during the same year, Alexander made 
a collection of his brothers poems, and published 
them in 1840, with an interesting memoir of the 
author. A copy of this work having fallen into the 
hands of Mrs. Hill, wife of Mr. Frederick Hill, 
inspector of prisons, that lady wrote to Alexander 
Bethune, offering to use her interest in procuring 
him a situation either as a teacher, or in some way 
connected witli the prisons. It was a tempting offer 
to one in his situation, and Alexander so far com- 
plied with it as to try the office of a turnkey in the 
prison at Glasgow. But a week's experience sufficed 
him, and in March, 1841, he wrote a grateful answer 
to the lady, respectfully declining her offer, and 
stating that he did not wish an ajiplication to be 
made for one wlio hatl no qualifications above those 
of a common labourer. 

In 1842 Alexander Bethune visited Edinburgh to 
make arrangements for the publication of 7 he 
Scottish Peasant's Fireside, \\hich ajipearcd early in 
the following year. But this was the last of his in- 
tellectual efforts, and his life of struggle was drawing 
to a close. He hatl previously been attacked by 
fever, and although the disease had been partially 
cured, it had settled down into the more dangerous 
form of ]nilmonai-y consumption. In one of the 
delusive intervals of this insidious comjilaint, an offer 
was made to him of t!ie editorshiji of the Dumfries 
Standard, a ]iaper about to be started in that town, 
while his salary as editor was to be fi<Xi a year. 
Such a ])ros])ect of comfortable independence, and 
with occupation so nuich to liis liking, ^^'as too 
temjjting to be ovciiooked, and he signified his 
readiness to accept the situation should the recovery 
of his health be confirmed. But he ra])idly grew 
worse, and died at Newburgh on the 13th of June, 
1843, hi the tliirly-uinth year of his age. His 
remains were interred in Abdie church-yard, in the 
grave of his bioiJu'r foliii, with whom he had been 
so cl(jsely uiiiteil during life by their mutual hard- 
ships, ta^le^, and intellectual jnir.suils; and an in- 
teresting volume of his /,//(■, C'orres/oin/e/tre, and 
f.ilerarv Keinaius, was juiblished in 1845 by Mr. 
William M't'ombie, a fanner of Abeidceuidiire, who 
like himself had been a writer on social economy. 



SIR HENRY LINDESAY BETHUXE. 



127 



BETHUNE, Sir Henry Lindesay, Bart. This 
gallant soldier, whose character and deeds are still 
cherished in the remembrance of the Persians, was 
bom on the 12th April, 1787. He was of the ancient 
family of the Lords Lindsay of the Byres in Fife- 
shire, and s(jn of Major Martin Eccles Lindesay 
Bethune, by a dauj,'hter of General Tovey. Eni- 
bracinjj the military profession, he entered the East 
India Company's service as a cadet in 1804, and by 
successive steps rose to the rank of major. It was 
not however in India that his high reputation was to 
be won; but in I'ersia, to whicli country he was sent 
for the purpose of aiding Abbas-Mirza, crown-prince 
of I'ersia, in organizing his artillery; and he soon 
became the favourite not only of that distinguished 
prince, but of the whole Persian army. His personal 
j)resence indeed was enough to secure the admi- 
ration of such an imaginative, half-civilized people 
as the Persians; for he was about seven feet in 
height, while his successful deeds of daring seemed 
to realize those wondbrful tales of ancient heroism 
to which they loved to listen. One of his exploits 
may serve as a specimen. During the war of the 
Persians against Russia, and while the armies of the 
two countries were in the field, Prince Abbas had 
set out one day on a hunting excursion, accompanied 
by his staff, and taking witli him the artillery horses, 
to beat up for game. Availing themselves of such 
an opportunity, the Russians made an attack upon 
the Persian camp, and carried off Major Lindesay's 
six brass guns. As soon as the major returned he 
was made aware of the loss; and on surveying the 
Russian encam|)ment with his glass, he saw the 
six ginis ranged in front of their lines. At his 
sunnnons his troojiers were instantly in the saddle; 
at their head he charged across the plain; and after 
a slujrt skirmish, in which the Russian advanced 
posts were swept aside, he broke through and rode 
down the troops opposed to him, and recovered and 
brought back the guns in the face of the whole 
Russian army. 

Sixteen years were thus spent in the Persian 
service, and the deeds of Bethune had made him the 
h'au ideal of an invincible champion in the eyes of 
the orientals. He was Rustan, the ancient Hercules 
of Persia, revived, or a new one raised in his room. 
But while his deeds fired their imaginations, his 
kindness to the soldiers, his strict imijartiality, and 
the justice with which he caused their arrears to be 
paid in full — cjualities very unusual among eastern 
commanders — made him almost an object of their 
idolatrous worship, so that all were delighted to 
obey such a leader, and ready to follow him to the 
death. 1 laving successfully accomplished his missi(jn 
to Persia, Bethune returned home; entered into 
possession of his estate of Kilcon(]uhar in Fifeshire, 
inherited from his grandfather, David Bethune of 
lialfour, whose name he also adoiited; and in 1S22 
married Coutts, eMot daughter of John Trotter of 
Dyrham P.irk, IKrts. He now held the rank of 
major-general in tiie Fast India Company's service, 
front wiiich he retire<l; and although as yet only 
tiiirty-five years nld, he had achieved enough for 
lame, a;i<l ri-on hii^h enough for ami)ition. I'.ut 
aiter an internii»i')ii of twelve jieaceful years, events 
ag.iin >uniniiir,ed him to the field. 'I'hcv arn>e al~o 
in I'cr>ia, the country with wiiich, next to Ids ov.ii, 
he wa-. mo-^t cl'>-ely connected. i'"utteh AH .^hah, 
the soverci^'a i>f I'er-i.i, had died; his eldest son. 
Abbas, the p.itron and lVic;i<l of Iletlnme, had ai.-o 
died during his tathci-'> lifciime; and the throne of 
Per>ia had imw devolved on .Mahomed-M ir/n. tlie 
son of Abba^-Miiva, and gr.ii;d-Mn I'f tile l.'.te Sitah 
oi l'er,-.!a. Br.i in tlie Last nutliing i^ more prcc.'.rijus 



I than the right of succession through royal hereditary 
descent, and a pretender t<j the Persian throne ajj- 
peared in the person of ZuUi Sultan, the younger 
brother of Abbas, and uncle of the rightful heir, who 
levied an army and proclaimed war to make his title 
good. In this emergency Mahomed api)ealed to 
England, which he was not likely to do in vain, as 
the security (jf our rule in India was incompatible 
with a usurpation and civil war in Persia; and at the 
same time Bethune rejiaired to London, and offered 
his services to government for the suppre.s.-,ion oi 
those Persian disturbances. It was at once .seen 
that the right man had voluntarily appeared at the 
critical moment, and in 1834 he was sent to Persia, 
with the local rank of colonel in Asia, and the office 
of accredited agent of the I'.ritish government. 

Great was the delight of the adherents of the right- 
ful prince at the arrival of Bethune in their country 
once more. The stories of his former chivalrous 
deeds were still their favourite themes, and they 
triumphed in the assured success of their cause, now 
that he had reappeared to lead them onward. The 
rebels were proportionably dismayed, and to get rid 
of such a terrible enemy, the usuqoer, Zulli Sultan, 
offered a reward of four thousand tomauns to any 
one who would bring him this son of Shitan's head. 
.\ still more serious difficulty to the royal cause ajj- 
peared in the reluctance of those British officers who 
[possessed the claim of seniority of service to ])lace 
themselves under the command of Colonel Bethune; 
but when he offered to take an inferior position, and 
serve under an older officer, as a temporary arrange- 
ment until the question should be settled by the 
authorities at home, they were shamed by such noble 
disinterested moderation, and unanimously recog- 
nized his right to command. High as had been the 
expectations of the Persians at his arrival, Bethune's 
proceedings during the short campaign which fol- 
lowed amply fulfilled them. \Vith the advanceil 
guard of the shah's army, which he commanded, he 
resolved to fall upon the rebels by surprise; but ft*r 
this, such a swift and secret march was necessary 
as the clumsy armies of the East can seldom accom- 
plish. But he did accomplish it, although for the 
purpose he was described as "dragging the army 
after him." The result was worth the effort, tor 
"he came, saw, and conquered" — fell upon the rebels 
at unawares, scattered them by his fierce unexpected 
onset, and conclusively extinguished the rebellion 
by making Zulli .Sultan priscjiicr. By this decisive 
victory, won in December, 1834. the way was opened 
to the young shah for a succes.■^lul entrance into his 
capital of Teheran, who on his part was not slack 
to acknowledge the services of the contjuerer. He 
heaped magnificent titles and gold medals upmi 
Bethune, created him general ami master-general of 
the artillery, and commanded that his worth and 
good services sliould be inscrii)ed in the booksof llie 
records of the kings of Persia. (Jne oi tlicsc di-iir.^- 
tions w.as too reniarkalile in oriental eyes to ]';■ 
I)as.-ed over. He tlesired Bethune to select tiic be-". 
steed in the royal stable; and when this \'.a> cImi;-, 
the shah, after gracing tlie noble animal by ri ii:ig 
on it into Teheran, presented it to tb.e r.ri:i-h C":n- 
mander. The roval atlen^Ianls and r...Mo-> ivr.vr.- 



strated with tlie 
rieprive tl;e r^ ival 



shah. ; 

■ tud of 
he answered, tliai he v. 
!ii>r>es. if sv.ch culii be 
gallant cliairipii ai. N'lr'. 
in ackiiow led^'in,; tb,-.' va! 
Persia. I ie \\a> in 1S35 
of iiiai'ir-i^-L'ii.-r.-.! in I.i- i' 
on tile riii 'A yi.v.S... i:- 



d be- 



ir.il.er 

, l:i.-.:i 



12S 



JOHN BETHUNE. 



patent. But no titles coukl aggrandize him in the 
eyes of the Persians after this last campaign, in which 
he had outdone all his former achievements, and the 
public feeling is thus recorded in a jjrivate letter at 
the time from Persia, which was published in the 
United Service Gcizdlc: "Great is the name of 
Lindesay in this country, and great ought it to be, 
for certainly he was just formed for service in Persia 
in troubled times like these. The confidence the 
soldiers have in him is quite wonderful, and all 
classes talk of him as if there never had appeared on 
earth before so irresistible a conqueror." 

Having seen the disturbances of Persia composed, 
and the rightful heir established on the throne, Sir 
Henry Botlume, in September, 1835, returned to .Scot- 
land, and devoted himself to the jteaceful life and 
duties of a country gentleman. In 1850, however, 
his health having failed, it was hoped that a visit to 
Persia and the inthience of its climate might renovate 
his sinking constitution, and restore him to his 
wonted activity. Thither accordingly the sick man 
went; and the Persians who had seen him in the 
days of his grandeur, when his appearance and deeds 
were the realization of romance, now looked with 
sympathizing sorrow upon the gigantic ruin of him 
who had been their cherished hero and benefactor, 
and who now seemed to have returned for the sole 
])urpose of dying among them. This forelx)ding 
was realized, f )r General IJethune died at Tabreez on 
the iQtli of February, 185 1, and the event was be- 
wailed by the Persians as a national calamity. Sir 
Henry at his death left three sons and five daughters, 
and was succeeded in his title and estates by his 
eldest son. Sir John Trotter Bethune. 

BETHUISrE, John. This poet and miscellaneous 
writer, the younger brother of Alexander Bethune, 
of whoni we have already given a notice, was born 
at the .Mount, in the parish of Monimail, Fifeshire, 
during the summer of 1810. As the poverty of his 
parents had restricted the education of Alexander to 
four or five months of school attendance, that of 
John was limited to a single day, after which he 
never was at school again. He was taught, however, 
to read by his mother, and was initiated into 
writing and arithmetic V;y his elder brother Alex- 
ander, who was his teacher in boyhood, and guardian 
and counsellor in more advanced years. Ilis first 
employment was that of a cowherd, in which he 
was emi)loyed for several years; but at the age of 
twelve lie was obliged to join his brother in the 
toilsome work of breaking stones on the turnpike- 
road. Under the desire of bettering his condition, 
ami l)y t'r.- advice of a comrade, he apprenticed him- 
self eirly in 1S24 to a country weaver, and so 
speetlily ac'inired dexterity in the trade, that at the 
end of tile first year he found that he could earn 
fifteen sii;]!ings a week. This was much better than 
stone-breaking, and with the ho])e of being alile to 
assist his aged parents, he resolved to f )llow weaving 
as his fiiture cr.ifi, f )r wliicli purpose he purchased 
a loom in 1825, and coninienced in earnest, with his 
brother Alexander for jiis apprentice. But the 
national mercantile (le])ression which f)llowed so 
utterly disa])j)ointed his calculations, that his earn- 
ings were so'MI reduced to six shillings weekly, and 
finding that he could not get on at tiiis rate, he 
returned to his old occu])ation as an out-door 
lal>ourer. 

Amitlst all these hardships and jirivations of boy- 
hood a!id youth, John liethune had also to encounter 
the evils attendant upon a delicate cc)nstitution, and 
successive periofls of weak health repeatedly sus- 
pended his labour in the fields. It was during these 



inters'als that he consoled himself with reading and 
composition, and under this harsh apprenticeship his 
intellectual qualities were called forth and ripened 
for action. As might be expected also, his poetical 
talents obtained the preference: in such lonely exer- 
cises, he found the easiest mode in which his intellect 
could be tasked, and the fittest vent for his emotions; 
and before he had completed his nineteenth year, he 
had composed upwards of twenty poetical pieces of 
considerable length, and all of them pervaded by 
considerable beauty both of sentiment and language. 
These attempts however, by which, in the course of 
time, he might make himself independent of bodily 
toil, for which he found himself unfitted, were for 
several years prosecuted by stealth, as if they were 
an offence denounced by every literaiy and in- 
tellectual tribunal. It speaks much for the wonder- 
ful modesty of the young poet, that he could so 
carefully withhold the knowledge of such composi- 
tions from his friends, and be content with the solitary 
satisfaction of stolen waters, and bread eaten in 
secret. None but his brother and his parents knew 
how these lonely hours were employed. "Up to 
the latter part of 1835," Alexander Bethune states 
in the memoir of his brother, "the whole of his 
writing had been prosecuted as stealthily as if it had 
been a crime punishable by law. There being but 
one a]iartment in the house, it was his custom to 
write by the fire, with an old copy-book, upon which 
his paper lay, resting on his knee, and this, through 
life, was his only writing-desk. On the table, which 
was within reach, an old newspaper was kept con- 
tinually lying, and as soon as the footsteps of any 
one were heard approaching the door, copy-book, 
pens, and inkstand were thrust under the covering, 
and before the visitor came in, he had, in general, 
a book in his hand, and appeared to have been 
reading." 

Since October, 1829, John 15ethune had been em- 
ployed as a day-labourer on the grounds of Inchrye, 
in the neighbourhood of his birth-jilace; but in 1835, 
on the death of the overseer, he was a]ipointed his 
successor. The emoluments of this office consider- 
ably exceeded anything he had formerly enjoyed, for 
its salary was £2(3 a year, with the right of a cow's 
pasturage. To this new situation he gladly betook 
himself, with his brother Alexander as his assistant; 
but their satisfaction was short-lived, for the estate 
of Inchrye soon changed owners, which was followed 
by a change of office-bearers. Under these circum- 
stances, the brothers were obliged to leave their snug 
appointment; and, to add to their misfortunes, the 
new landhn-d recpiircd the little cottage at Lochend, 
in which they had located their aged ])arents. Being 
thus altogether homeless John and Alexander stoutly 
resolved to erect a house for themselves, and this 
they did chiefly with their own hands, at Mount 
Pleasant, near Newburgh; and here the bold-hearted 
intellectual peasants, after having tried various kinds 
of hand-labour in vain, resolved to make literature 
their principal resource. The career of the elder in 
this department has been already stated, so that we 
shall confine ourselves to that of John. He con- 
tributed to the Scotlisk Christian Hcnild, Wi/son's ^ 
'J\i!cs of the Jiordcrs, and other serials, and supplied 
five pieces to his brother's 'J ales aiui Skctehes oj the 
Scottish J'easantry. He also jointly wrote with 
.Alexander the J.eetures on /'rai-tica/ J-'.eoiioniy, de- 
signed to improve the homes and haljitsoftlie ])oor, 
and which was commended by the press, although 
the work did not become popular. He had thus 
tried the experiment of a literary life, and so far as 
he had gone it had proved a failure. But still the 
battle was not lost. His attempts, which were 



HUGH BINNING 



CHARLES BISSET. 



129 



wonderful for his education and circumstances, had 
obtained honourable recognition where such recog- 
nition could be available; he was not only young to 
this new life, but also young in years; and a few 
more attempts would have shown the qualities he 
possessed, and established his reputation as a worthy 
candidate for literary fame. It was too late, how- 
ever, to attempt the trial anew. Deep mortification 
at the failure of the work on Practical Economy 
preying on a constitution already broken, brought 
on pulmonary consumption, and he died at Mount 
Pleasant on the ist of September, 1839, in the 
thirtieth year of his age. 

Thus passed away an obscurely born and hard- 
handed son of toil, who, witiiout the training of 
college or school, and with few of even the ordinary 
opportunities of self-improvement, became a vigorous 
original prose writer, and a poet of no ordinary 
mark. While his writings in either capacity were 
stamped with the impress of true genius, they also 
showed much depth of reflection, ennobled by the 
spirit of genuine devotional piety. And such also 
was his daily life, simple, pure, and meditative, 
showing a man far above the ordinary mark, and 
isolated from the sphere in which he lived. His 
poems, by which he was so little known while he 
jived, but which will constitute his best commemora- 
tion, were published by his brother Alexander, with 
a memoir of their author, in 1840; and from the 
profits of the second edition, a sufficient sum was 
realized to erect a monument over the grave of John 
Bethune in the churchyard of the village of Abdie. 

BINNING, Hugh, an extraordinary instance of 
precocious learning and genius, was the son of John 
Binning of Dalvennan, a landed gentleman of Ayr- 
shire. He appears to have been born about tlie 
year 1627. In his earliest years he outstripped all 
his seniors in the acquisition of Latin. At Glasgow 
College, which he entered in his fourteenth year, he 
distinguished himself very highly in philosophy. 
What was to others only gained by hard study, 
seemed to be intuitively known by Binning. After 
taking the degree of Alaster of .-Vrts, he began to 
study for the church. When Mr. James Daln,mple, 
afterwards Lord Stair, vacated the chair of philo- 
sophy at Glasgow, Binning, though not yet nineteen, 
stood a competitor with some men of graver years 
and very respectable acquirements, and gained the 
object of his ambition by the pure force of merit. 
Though unprepared for entering upon his duties, no 
deficiency was remarked. He was one of the first 
in Scotland to reform philosophy from the barbarous 
jargon of the schools. While fulfilling the duties of 
his chair in the most satisfactory manner, he con- 
tinued his study of theology, and a vacancy occur- 
ring in the church of Govan, near Glasgow, he re- 
ceived a call to be its minister. Here he married 
Barbara Simpson, the daughter of a Presbyterian 
clergym.in in Ireland. As a preacher, Mr. Binning's 
fame was very great : his knowledge was extensive, 
and there was a fervour in his eloquence which bore 
away the hearts of his congregation, as it were, to 
heaven. .\t the division of the church into resolu- 
tioners and protesters, he took the latter and more 
zealous sitle, but yet was too full of virtuous and 
benevolent feeling to be a violent partisan. In 
order to heal the difference as much as possible, he 
wrote a treatise on Christian love. When Oliver 
Cromwell came to GI.xsijow, he caused a dispute to 
be helil between his own Independent clergjmen 
and the .*^cottish Presbyterian ministers. Binning 
having nonplussed his opponents, Cromwell asked 
the name of "that bold young man." On being told 

VuL. I. 



that he was callefl Mr. Hugh Binning, the sectarian 
general said, "He hath Ixjund well, indeed, but" 
(clapping his hand up(m his sword) "this will loose 
all again." This excellent young preacher died of 
consumption, 1653, in his twenty-sixth year, leaving 
behind him a rejjutation for piety, virtue, and learn- 
ing, such as has rarely l)een attained by any indi- 
vidual under that age. Besides his treatise on Chris- 
tian love, he wrote many miscellaneous pieces of a 
pious nature, which were jjublished in 1732, in one 
volume quarto. A selecti<m from these, under the 
title of Evani^dical Beauties of Jfui^h liiuniug, a])- 
peared in 1829, with a memoir of the author by the 
Kev. John Brown of Whitburn. 

BISSAT, OR BISSART, Peter, professor of the 
canon law in the university of Bononia, was bom in 
Fife in the reign of James V., being a descendant of 
Thomas Bissat, or Bissart, who was Earl of Life in 
the reign of David II. He received instructions in 
grammar, philosophy, and the laws at the university 
of .St. Andrews, and afterwards perfected his educa- 
tion at that of Paris. Having then travelled into 
Italy, he was honoured by the university of Bononia 
with the degree of Doctor of Laws, and shortly after 
became professor of the canon law in that seminar}-, 
in which situation he continued for several years 
"with great applause." 

Bissat appears to have been a man of general 
accomplishment — a poet, an orator, and a philoso- 
pher; but his forte lay in the canon law. His 
various writings were published at Venice in 1565, 
in quarto, under the title Fatricii Bissarti Opera 
Omnia, viz. Poemala, Orationcs, Lectioties Feriales, 
ct Liber dc Irregiilaritate. The last of these com- 
positions was a commentary on that part of the 
canon law which gives the reasons assigned by the 
Church of Rome for excluding certain laymen from 
the clerical office.' Bissat died in the latter part of 
the year 1568. 

BISSET, Ch.\RI.ES, an ingenious physician and 

1 Of these, as detailed by Bissat, an abstract may be inter- 
esting to the British reader, now happily so little familiar with 
the systems of the Catholic church. The primitive Christians, 
in admitting the clergy, observed exactly the rules laid down 
by St. Paul in the first epistle to 'I'imothy. Yet sometimes, as 
we learn from St. Cyprian, at the pressing instance of the 
people, persons of noted merit, who refused through humility, 
were compelled to enter. By the canons, however, a man 
required to be a deacon before he could be a priest, and a 
priest before he could be a bishop. It was a general principle 
of the church, that the clergy should be chosen from the most 
holy of the laity, and, therefore, all liable to any reproach in 
their lives and conversations were e.\cluded. .Agreeably to 
this principle, which agreed with the injunction of St. Paul, 
that they should be blameless and without reproach, the first 
council of Nice excluded all those, specifically, who, alter 
baptism, had lieen guilty of any sort of crime, such as heresy, 
homicide, or adultery; nor was penanie any palliative, seeing 
that the memory of the offence always remained; while it w,is 
to be expected that those whose lives were without stain should 
be preferred Jo those who had fallen. Thus all persons uh j 
had performed penance were excluded. Those also were 
deemed irregular, and not entitled to admittance, who l.ad 
killed any person, by accident or in self-defence, or who had 
borne arms even in a just war; who had twice married. < r 
married a widow; or who engaged much ill worldly affair^: ail 
of which circumstances were held as-derogating in sf.me Ctfrte 
from the necessary- purity of the individual. I'he only •■thcr 
moral disqualification was ignorance. The physical diMiuaii;:ca- 
tions were almost cqiually numerous. All deaf. dumb, i r ! nr.u 
persons were excluded, as unable to perf'>rm their functions in 
a proper manner. .All persons who were lame, or had ar.y 
deformity calculated to create an aversion in the ;K.";ile. were 
declared unfit for orders. Ma(lne.-.s and self-nuitil.it: ;i ucre 
disqualifications. All persons Ix.rn out of wedl^c'rc were ex- 
cluded, because, however innocent the individual m hi^ ■ «n 
person, the a.-.sociations which the sight of them w.is calcu- 
lated to aw.aken were not favuiirat.lc to virt'.;c. S..ivc-. ser- 
vants, children, and monastic clcrjjy without the ton^eiit of 
their superiors, were excluded. 

9 



130 



CHARLES BISSET JOHN BLACK. 



writer on fortification, was born at Glenalbert, near 
Dunkeid, in the year 171 7. It is only known, re- 
garding his parentage, tliat his father was a lawyer 
of some eminence, and a distinguished Latinist. 
After a course of medical studies at Edinburgh, he 
was appointed, in 1740, second surgeon of the 
military hospital in Jamaica, and spent several years 
in the West India Islands, and in Admiral Vernon's 
fleet, in order to become acquainted with the diseases 
of the torrid zone. But, while thus seeking to avert 
disease from others. Dr. Bisset became himself liable 
to its ravages. Having, in 1745, contracted ill 
health at Greenwich in Jamaica, he was obliged to 
resign his situation as second surgeon, in order to 
return to Britain. In May, 1746, he purchased an 
ensigncy in the 42d (Highland) regiment, then com- 
manded by Lord John Murray. By this transition 
his attention was turned from the medical to the 
military profession, and fortification became his 
favourite study. After a fruitless descent on the 
coast of Brittany in September, 1748, and passing a 
winter at Limerick in Ireland, the regiment was, in 
the beginning of next campaign, brought into action 
at Sandberg, near Hulst, in Dutch Flanders, where 
one Dutch and two English regiments suffered very 
severely. Here Dr. Bisset employed himself in 
drawing a sketch of the enemy's approaches, and 
some time after, in another of Bergen-op-Zoom, with 
the permanent lines, the environs, and the enemy's 
first parallel; which were presented by his colonel 
to the Duke of Cumberland, the commander-in-chief 
The duke was so much pleased with these specimens 
of Dr. Bisset's military knowledge, that he ordered 
him to attend the siege of Bergen-op-Zoom, and give 
due attention daily to the progress of both the attack 
and the defence, in order to form a journal of the 
whole proceedings. This distinguished duty Dr. 
Bisset undertook with a modest reluctance, the 
result rather of inexperience than of any conscious- 
ness of want of knowledge. The result, however, 
was highly honourable to him. His journals, duly 
illustrated with plans, were daily delivered to Lord 
John Murray, who forwarded them every second or 
third day to the duke, who was then at Maestricht, 
at the head of the allied army, observing the motions 
of the French army under Marshal Saxe. His royal 
highness was pleased to express his approbation, by 
recommending Dr. Bisset to the Duke of Montagu, 
then master-general of the ordnance, who honoured 
him with a warrant as engineer extraordinary to the 
brigade of engineers; he was at the same time pro- 
moted to a lieutenancy in the army. At the end of 
the war, Bisset being placed on half-pay, he had full 
leisure to pursue his studies in fortification, and also 
to visit the principal specimens of the art upon the 
Continent. The result was his Essay on (he Theory 
and Constntction of Fortifications, which appeared 
in 1 75 1, in 8vo. 

His attention being now disengaged from this 
pursuit, he resumed his original profession, and, for 
the sake of a healthy air, whicli was necessary to his 
weakly constitution, retired to practise at the village 
of Skelton, in Cleveland, Yorksiiire, wiiere he spent 
the remainder of his life. In 1755, when the Seven 
Years' war was imiiending, he puhlished a 1 realise on 
the Scitrzy, with Keimirks on tJie Cure of Scorbutic 
Ulcers, wiiich he dedicated to Viscount Anson and 
the other lords of the admiralty. In 1762 ajipearcd 
his Essay on the Medical Constitution ofCrcat /Britain, 
which he inscribed to his friend .Sir John I'ringle. 
In this work he shows the effects of the change f)f 
weather, and of the seasons, on the diseases of (ireat 
Britain; and at tlic conclusion is an interesting pa]:)cr 
on the virtues of the herb bcar's-foot in the cure of 



worms. In 1765 the university of St. Andrews 
conferred upon him the degree of M.D. In 1766 
he published, at Newcastle, a volume of Medical 
Essays and Observations, in which are upwards of 
twenty papers on the climate and diseases of the 
West Indies, which his experience in that country 
had enabled him to illustrate in a most satisfactory 
manner; besides some others on the chronic diseases 
of Great Britain, particularly the hooping-cough and 
the scorbutic itch, as well as many chirurgical 
remarks, which show a mind bent on the improve- 
ment of his profession. A few years before his 
death he deposited in the library of the infirmary 
at Leeds a manuscript of medical observations, in 
octavo, and extending to nearly seven hundred pages; 
for which the physicians of that institution honoured 
him with a formal vote of thanks. Dr. Bisset also 
presented a manuscript treatise on fortification to the 
Prince of Wales (afterwards George IV.), which was 
deposited in his royal highness's private library. 
These, with a small published treatise on naval 
tactics, and a few political papers, constituted the 
whole of the intellectual exertions of this distinguished 
man; who died at Knayton, near Thirsk, in May, 
1791, aged seventy-five years. 

BLACK, John. This eccentric genius and dis- 
tinguished London journalist was born near Dunse, 
Berwickshire, in 1783. He was of very lowly 
parentage, and to add to the difficulty of attaining 
eminence under such circumstances, he lost his father 
in infancy, and his mother when he was only twelve 
years of age. He gave, however, such early indica- 
tions of talent and aptitude for learning, that his 
mother, like a true Scottish dame of the lower 
orders, hoped that her boy might at a future day 
"wag his pow in a pu'pit," and had encouraged his 
dawning genius by every means in her power. 
Black was at an early age sent to the parish school 
at Dunse, which was four miles distant, and these 
eight miles in going and returning the boy trudged 
daily on foot — a practice that laid the foundation of 
those peripatetic habits which lasted with him through 
life. Being unable, after the death of his mother, 
to perfect his education so as to qualify himself for 
realizing her hopes, he was obliged, at the age of 
fourteen, to enter a factor's office in Dunse, as an 
errand-boy; but after staying long enough in this 
situation to discover that he was fit for something 
better, he went in his eighteenth year to Edinburgh, 
and obtained employment at a stationer's. Still 
migrating upward, he became successively a clerk 
in two, if not three, offices of writers to the signet in 
Edinburgh. It was evident, however, from his 
studies that these changes were only steps to a 
different end; for by self-teaching he made himself 
master of Latin and Greek, and not content with 
classical learning, he acquired the German language 
from an Austrian musician belonging to the lulin- 
burgh theatre, and Italian from another foreign 
musician, teaching them the iMiglish language in 
return. He also acquired French so as to read it 
with tolerable ease, but without being able to con- 
verse in it with s"ufficient correctness. 

After these acquirements, Black's growing aml)i- 
tion carried him to London, the proper sphere where 
he could turn them to the best account. He was 
now twenty-seven years old when he set out on 
this journey, which was performed solely on foot, 
and he arrived in the great motro]iolis with only 
three halfpence in his pocket. It was as hoj^cful a 
foundation for a London fortune as the most enter- 
prising Scotsman coidd desire. It was well for 
lilack that he also brou;:ht letters of introduction to 



JOHN BLACK. 



»3i 



Mr. Perry, the proprietor and editor of the Morning 
Chronicle, one of these being from Mr. Gibson, after- 
wards Sir James Gibson-Craig. Mr. Perry, an 
admirable judge of such applicants, was pleased with 
the bold active spirit and talents of the Scottisli 
candidate, and employed him forthwith upon his 
paper. Here he was not only at home, but among 
the honoured, for the Morning Chronicle had lately 
given employment to John Campbell, after\vards 
Lord-chancellor of England, and to Mr. (afterwards 
Serjeant) Spankie; while the reporters of the paper 
at the time of Black's arrival and afterwards, were 
chiefly Scotch and Irish young men of high talent 
and promise. His employment as a member of this 
staff was to translate the foreign journals, and to take 
his "turn" as a reporter in the gallery of the parlia- 
ment house. Black soon obtained the reputation of 
being a very rapid reporter; but Mr. Proby, the 
managing conductor under Mr. Perry, used to 
declare, that his chief merit consisted in the wonder- 
ful speed with which he moved from the House of 
Commons to the office in the Strand. At this last 
place, also. Black's eccentricities were still more 
remarkable than his light-heeled speed. He kept 
the reporters' room in a ferment by loud radical 
declamations and debates upon the subject before the 
house, while the overseer was worried by these 
delays, which prevented the "copy" from being 
delivered until the last moment. In consequence of 
these peculiarities, Black was called by his compeers 
the "Professor of Logic," and the "Flying Scotch- 
man." Finding in the earlier part of his career in 
London that something more than reporting in a 
newspaper was necessary for his subsistence, he also 
laid himself out for occupation among the booksellers, 
not however in works of original authorship, but as 
a translator. His translations were the following: — 
Political Essay on the Kingdom of New Spain, &c., 
from the French of A. de Humboldt, 4 vols. 8vo, 
1811-12; Travels through Nonvay and Lapland, 
from the German of Leopold, with notes, and a life 
of the author, by Professor Jamieson, 4to, 1813; 
Memoirs 0/ Coldoni, the Celebrated Italian Dramatist, 
written by himself, from the French, 2 vols. 8vo, 
1 8 13; and a Course of Lectures on the Dramatic Arts 
and Literature, translated from the German of 
Schlegel, 2 vols. 8vo, 1815. 

The industry, perseverance, and talent of Mr. 
Black were crowned with success, when, two years 
before Mr. Perry's death (which occurred in 1821), 
he was appointed principal editor of the Morning 
Chronicle. So well also was his reputation estab- 
lished, that he held this oftice in permanence, so that 
when the paper was sold by Mr. Perry's executors 
in 1823, Mr. Black was continued sole editor, and 
sucli w.xs also the case when it was re-sold in 1834. 
The whole period of his editorship comprised nearly 
a quarter of a centur)', and during that time, how- 
ever seldom he may have appeared in the streets of 
the political world, or been recognized by the moving 
crowds, he was still a power in the state that made 
himself be felt by all parties alike, and next to the 
Jupiter Tonans of the Times he occupied the highest 
place in political journalism. His character while 
holding this elevated position was enough to disarm 
envy, and secure for him the general esteem. "He 
wxs necessarily brought," says his biographer, "into 
social and political intercourse, during that time, 
with some of the principal men of his dav. And 
it is but doing scanty justice to his memory to sav, 
that no one knew him wlio did not love him for the 
guilclcssness of his disposition; and admire him, not 
only lor the vast range of his learning, liut for his 
steriirg anil fearless honesty 01" I'l'.ri'cse, and his 



sincere, earnest, and successful advocacy of liberal 
principles." 

The personal and domestic habits of Mr. Black, 
even in London and while editor of such a journal, 
were not only characterized by the simplicity of his 
early life, but by an eccentricity in which few but 
himself would have ventured to indulge. Instead 
of having a separate mansion of his own, where he 
could receive his titled friends, or play the courteous 
patron before admiring dependants, he dwelt at his 
workshop, occupying the higher story of the office 
of the Morning Chronicle, in Norfolk Street, Strand. 
He was twice married, but his first marriage was 
under circumstances of which little is known. The 
second Mrs. Black was Miss Cromeck, sister of the 
artist of that name, residing in N'ewman .Street, 
Oxford Street, where Black was a temporary lodger. 
This person is described as a woman of remarkable 
appearance, in person something like Meg Merrilies 
in the tale of Guy Manneritig. The style of living 
followed by the pair in the garrets of Norfolk Street 
was such as to amaze strangers, and amuse their 
acquaintances. The walls of the rooms were wain- 
scotted with books, the floors were thickly carpeted 
or rather paved with the same commodities, and 
between the piles and pyramids it was a task of diffi- 
culty for the visitor to thread his way. Even in the 
bed-room, the sides of the bed itself were blocked up 
with such stockades of volumes, that to enter it 
laterally was impossible, and the pair were obliged 
to effect a lodgment by creeping in at one end of 
it. And these books were not to be moved, or 
dusted by any hand but his own. In his walks 
Black's constant attendant was a large Newfound- 
land dog, named Cato, whom he used to tug along 
from one bookstall to another, or to run with to and 
from Blackheath and London at all hours of the 
night. 

In the enumeration of Mr. Black's literary- friends 
who contributed articles and communications to the 
Morning Chronicle, we have an interesting peep 
behind the curtain of political journalism, and can 
mark how an influential London newspaper is sup- 
ported and conducted. The following quotation on 
this subject would be too long, were it not for the 
information which it gives to the uninitiated, on 
which account we quote it almost entire:- — 

"The late Duke of Sussex was an active purveyor 
for him [Mr. Black] during the illness of George IIL 
and the regency. His other frequent writers weie 
Sheridan, Adair, D. Kinnaird, General Palmer, 
Mr. E. Dubois, the Rev. Mr. Colton, Lord HoUanil 
(very often), the late John Allan, Porson, Jekyll, 
'Tommy Ilill,' Horace Smith, and other worthies 
now no more. To these especially, and as more 
eminent political writers, may be added the names 
of Albany Fonblanque, James Mill, David Ricanio, 
C. P. Thomson (afterwards Lord Sydenham), Mr. 
M'Culloch (one of his most steady and attached 
friends), and Mr. Senior. These gentlemen wrote 
chiefly on subjects of political economy. Mr. Chad- 
wick, of course, provided Mr. Black with amjile 
material on the poor-laws. Mr. Francis Place, thou;^h 
a Charing-cross tailor, supplied Mr. Black, as als ) 
did Mr. Hume, with invaluable material in th.e (;iiM.i;.>- 
sion of the repeal and alteration of the combir.a'.;i)n 
laws, and the export of machinery, in 1S24-5. 
Many members of the Upper House also fr.nr.-l.cd^ 
him with contributions, especially the 'Jrckcy (.1 
Norfolk '—called the first I'lotestr.nt duke, tlic I.r.e 
Lords Erskine, Moira, Lauderdale. Duriinm. .".r.d 
Essex. Among the deceased conimr.ncr.-- v.c I'.ave 
omitted honourable mention of ib.c !.-.te (_l;r.r!ts 
BuUcr, who v.\ 1S30, then a ^iiidL:;; ;:; Mr. C-.^uuli.':, 



132 



JOHN BLACK. 



chambers, first used his pen for Mr. Black in lively 
and brief articles. The supposed ghost of Junius 
also haunted the editor's room. Sir Philip Francis 
was the author of the 'Historical Questions' which 
appeared in the Chro7iick; and Proby, the sub-editor, 
was struck by the similitude of the hand-writing to 
the facsimiles of the letters of Junius in the Public 
Ledger. Sir Philip long occasionally communicated 
both with Mr. Perry and Mr. Black. 
Lord Brougham's hand-writing was well known 
during the queen's trial, and for fully a quarter of a 
century afterwards. The Right Hon. Edmund Ellice, 
the member for Coventry, was, years since, a frequent 
and valued correspondent. . . . Mr. Joseph 
Parkes was a constant contributor from 1824 to later 
years; and we believe that gentleman penned in 
Birmingham most of the leading articles in the 
Chronicle on tithes, during the public agitation of 
that question and the commutation act. The same 
hand kept up a constant cannonade in Black's 
leaders on municipal, and parliamentary, and law 
reform, preceding 1831, and subsequently to the 
later settlement of those questions. Colonel Thomp- 
son had also his entree to Black's private room, and 
early launched the corn-law question, years before 
the ^L^nchester League and Sir Robert Peel 'settled' 
it. Old Colonel Jones, in the Aforning Chronicle, 
as well as in the Times, in 1830, 31, and 32, dis- 
charged his rifle-shots into the ranks of the 'corrup- 
tionists' of that day. Tom Moore deposited with 
Black occasional prose leaders on Irish party sub- 
jects. He also contributed poetry both to the 
Chronicle and the Times. Black's old friend and 
schoolfellow, Mr. Thomas Young, now living, was 
another invaluable friend of both journals, especially 
in the crisis of the reform acts, writing numerous 
articles for the Chronicle; and also keeping the press 
au courant in such information as Lord Melbourne 
(to whom Mr. Young was then private secretary) 
considered important for the right direction of public 
opinion. Sir Robert Peel, with all his prudery, 
did not think it inconsistent with his dignity to send 
a 'communication' now and then, with 'Sir Robert 
Peel's compliments.' He also had communications 
from Windsor in subsequent reigns. George HL 
was more than suspected by Mr. Black of the per- 
petration of a leading article, the subject being him- 
self; but the proof in this case was presumptive, not 
positive, though quite satisfactory to Mr. Black. 
Xor was Black's useful connection confined only to 
noblemen and gentlemen. He had a powerful corps 
of female contributors, among whom were the late 
Miss Edgeworth, and Mrs. Marcet, Lady Caroline 
Lamb, and, subsequently, a living lady of singular 
talent and force of mind, wife of an eminent his- 
torian." 

In this detail of the gratuitous assistants of the 
editor of the Morning Chronicle, the reader can 
easily detect the secret of the power of a London 
newspaper. While its literary character occupies so 
high a place, the correctness and importance of its 
political intelligence make it the observatory by 
which the timepieces of public opinion are regu- 
lated. While the contributors, however, can pre- 
serve this incognito with the public, they cannot 
tiius conceal themselves from the editor, and being 
the possessor of such dangerous knowledge, his 
character must be well cstal)lished for integrity, 
pnidence, and secrecy, before such a power can be 
intrusted to his hands. But this character Mr. 
Black possessed in an eminent degree. While his 
political acquaintanceship was so extensive, and 
while so many compromising articles were confided 
to his keeping, both by British and Irish statesmen 



and literary celebrities, in every case their secret was 
kept with inviolable fidelity. Nor was his sagacity 
in discovering youthful talent, and his readiness to 
cherish and bring it forward, inferior to his other 
qualities; and many a young writer whose early 
attempts he encouraged and liberally rewarded, 
found his patronage their first stepping-stone to 
fortune and fame. Thus, among others, it was with 
the celebrated Charles Dickens, who in his youth 
was a reporter to the Morning Chronicle, while 
Black was its editor. In a period of political 
turmoil, while public resentments are hot, and the 
language of journalism unmitigated, it is almost 
impossible for the editor of a great leading organ of 
public opinion to hold onward in his course un- 
checked; and hostile invitations will occasionally be 
sent to him requiring both wisdom and self-denial to 
refuse. Such was the case with Black, who on two 
occasions was "called out," in one instance by a 
professional colleague, to whom he had expressed 
certain political opinions too strongly, and in the 
other by Mr. Roebuck, who supposed Black to be 
author of an article in the Chronicle, which, how- 
ever, he did not write. Plappily both "affairs of 
honour," as they are called, terminated bloodlessly, 
and the Gothic custom has now fallen into contempt. 

Of the many statesmen with whom Mr. Black's 
position brought him into contact, one was Lord 
Melbourne, while he held the office of premier, who 
took great delight in the varied learning, extensive 
information, and simplicity, bluntness, and good- 
nature of the editor. In consequence of their mutual 
esteem, they were enabled at their interviews to 
unbend from the cares of politics, and find refuge in 
the literature of the past age, or general chat upon 
the living world around them. At one of these 
meetings Lord Melbourne said abruptly, "Mr. 
Black, you are the only person who comes to see 
me, who forgets who I am." Black stared, and 
the other added, "You forget that I am prime min- 
ister." The editor was about to offer an apology, 
when the jaunty easy-minded premier continued, 
"Everyljody else takes especial care to remember it; 
but I wish they would forget it; for they only re- 
member it to ask me for places and favours. Now, 
Mr. Black, you never ask me for anything, and I 
wish you would; for, seriously, I should be most 
happy to do anything in my power to serve you." 
"I am truly obliged," said Black, "but I don't want 
anything: I am editor of the Morning Chronicle; I 
like my business, and I live happily on my income." 
"Then by G — I envy you," cried his lordship, "and 
you're the only man I ever did." 

Mr. Black retired from the management of the 
Morning Chronicle in 1844, "under circumstances," 
adds his biographer, "which excited some regret 
among the liberal party, but on which it is not 
necessary for us to dwell." This oljliged him to 
]iart with his library, a large and valual)le Cdllection, 
for he had lieen, through the greater part of his life, 
an enthusiastic book-hunter — an